Carillon magazine - Winter 2015

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our History

07_ our explorers 17_ our thinkers 22_ our leaders

A Cornerstone for Generations 100 years on Peachtree

Einstein in the House Time is an Illusion: Revisiting Einstein’s Theories of Relativity, on view at the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art through April 30, celebrates the centenary of Einstein’s theory and Oglethorpe University’s 100 Years on Peachtree (1915-2015). This handwritten manuscript, The Experimental Confirmation of the General Theory of Relativity (ca. 1920), was penned by Albert Einstein at the request of his colleague Robert Lawson, who was translating Einstein’s 1917 work Relativity: the Special and General Theory. Lawson asked Einstein to provide observational proof of general relativity for the 1920 English edition and Einstein responded with this extraordinarily rare manuscript. Lawson retained the manuscript for years before it was acquired by Herman Gaertner (1866-1958), Professor of German and Mathematics at Oglethorpe University. His daughter, Nellie, a 1934 Oglethorpe graduate, donated the manuscript to the university in memory of her father in 1982. Visit to learn more about the Einstein exhibition and special events.



Renee Vary Keele

Debbie Aiken ’12 Christie Pearce ’15


Cover: On January 21, 1915, the cornerstone was laid for the future Hearst Hall on the new Oglethorpe campus. Pictured placing a copper box into the cornerstone, are: president-elect Dr. Thornwell Jacobs (right); construction superintendent William H. George (left); and little Frank Inman Jr.’31, son of the chairman of the Grounds Committee and grandson of Sam Inman, a prominent Atlantan. Eight alumni who graduated from the original Oglethorpe campus attended. For Jacobs, it was a dream realized—and in 2015, we celebrate 100 Years on Peachtree. Turn to page 5 for more about the story that changed the lives of generations to come.

Carillon is published twice a year for alumni, friends, and family of Oglethorpe University. Founded in 1835, Oglethorpe is a private, liberal arts college.

Debbie Aiken ’12 Eli Arnold ’06 J. Todd Bennett Lesley Cole Austin Gillis ’01 Patrick Grayshaw Barbara Bessmer Henry ’85 Heather Johnston ’17 Chloey Mayo ’10 Christie Pearce ’15 Parker Rhodes ’15 Kelly Holland Vrtis ’97 DESIGN EM2

PRINTING Standard Press

We’d love your feedback on this issue as well as what you might like to see in upcoming Carillon issues. Contact me at: 404-364-8868.









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Lawrence M. Schall President, Oglethorpe University

It was 10 years ago this fall that a search consultant called and asked me to have lunch to talk about an opportunity to lead a small, private liberal arts college. When she told me it was located in the South, I immediately responded I didn’t see myself leaving the northeast, ever. Today, I have a hard time thinking about leaving Atlanta, ever. What a difference 10 years makes.



On my first visit to campus, I was struck by a few things. First, while the bones of Oglethorpe were quite impressive, there was a lot of work to be done—sidewalks were cracked, landscape untended, and I worried what a prospective family might think about how well we would take care of their son or daughter if we weren’t taking care of the physical campus. Second, everyone I met seemed extraordinarily kind and friendly. Like I mentioned, I hail from the northeast and while we aren’t bad people up there, we are not all that gracious to strangers and passersby. Could everyone here really be that nice? And finally, there were the bells, the Westminster Chimes. The bell tower at my alma mater (and eventually my place of work for 15 years) housed a set of chimes that played what are known as the Westminster Quarters or the Cambridge Quarters. These famous chimes have been a large part of my life every 15 minutes since I was 17. Within minutes of arriving on Oglethorpe’s campus, I heard those same bells. It was a sign I was home again.

So, I guess that was my first “Oglethorpe story,” and as president for the last decade, I have been privileged to tell the Oglethorpe story in one form or another too many times to recount. In some ways, one might say my job here is chief storyteller and what a story we have to tell. 2015 marks the 100th anniversary of our re-founding on Peachtree Road. My favorite Oglethorpe stories are about our students, past and present. You will read a number of those inside this issue, students active in the classroom, laboratory, athletic fields, internships, and abroad. One characteristic that represents the best of an Oglethorpe education is that we demand that our students challenge themselves in ways that they might never have imagined…

By living in a community more diverse than any they have ever experienced… By tackling texts more complex than they have ever encountered... By confronting ideas they have never had to face before... By connecting the learning in the classroom with problems and issues they will face in the real world. There is nothing comfortable about an Oglethorpe education and we like it that way. We all need to step out of our comfort zones sometimes; that’s how the best stories and experiences are born. I’d love to know your Oglethorpe story. Who knows, it may end up in a future issue of the Carillon.


CARILLON | 2015 winter



It has been said that Oglethorpe University died at Gettysburg. When all the young scholars went off to war, faculty were dispersed, the endowment invested in Confederate bonds, and the buildings used as barracks and hospitals and later burned, Old Oglethorpe in Midway, Georgia, was no more.

Nescit Cedere! Oglethorpe and its supporters did not give up. The University was relocated after the war to Atlanta in 1870, and quickly became an important institution in the life of the city. But shortly after beginning its third term, The Presbyterian Synod of Georgia ordered the university closed due to financial difficulties. This, too, appeared to be the end of the road for Oglethorpe.

Nescit Cedere! But again, Oglethorpe was not dead. Allen Tankersley, in his 1951 book College Life at Old Oglethorpe, described the closing this way: Like Rip Van Winkle, Oglethorpe was now to sleep for forty years. The University was in a state of coma if not dead, but in 1913 Thornwell Jacobs, a grandson of one of the old professors at Midway, re-chartered Oglethorpe in Atlanta, and opened the campus’ first building two years later.

Manu Dei Resurrexit! In 2015, we celebrate 100 years on this campus, since the groundbreaking for the first building, Phoebe Hearst Hall. If walls could talk, imagine the stories that would flow from our blue granite walls. Imagine the lives changed beneath the variegated slate roofs, the traditions born within the quartered oak walls, and the graduates ushered into the world by our 42-bell carillon, ready to make a life, make a living, and make a difference. These stories, and there are thousands upon thousands of them, were made possible due to the perseverance of one man who never gave up on his dream to build one of the world’s great institutions. On the next page, Dr. Thornwell Jacobs shares, in his own words, his story of inspiration that led to the refounding of Oglethorpe. Through his story, and the countless others who have followed, we come to understand the true meaning of our motto, Nescit Cedere:

“He or she does not know how to give up.”

100 Years artwork by Thomas Burns winter winter 2015 2015 || CARILLON carillon

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The Refounding Oglethorpe University In all the history of American educational institutions there has never been written a more charming chapter, interwoven with real romance and moral beauty, than the story of the birth and death of Old Oglethorpe University. By Thornwell Jacobs President, 1915-1943 Oglethorpe University March 1927 Adapted by J. Todd Bennett

And rarely has there been in America a finer illustration of the immortality of high ideals than is exhibited in her resurrection from the gray ashes of fratricidal strife to her present position of honor and power among her sisters. She is perhaps unique among standard institutions of learning in that she alone, having died for her ideals, has also been raised from the dead. For today, on Peachtree Road, she is rapidly arising as one of the most beautiful universities in the whole world. My personal interest in this tragic romance originated in the stories told me when I was a little boy by my grandfather who used to visit his son in a little village of South Carolina and tell us, among his grandfather’s tales of the days when he was a professor at this old school in Milledgeville. I remember I used to say to myself, “When I am grown up and ready for college, I am going to Oglethorpe.” But his reply was, “No, my boy, you will never stand on the Oglethorpe campus.” As a matter of personal history, I finished my University work at Princeton. …During those wonderful three years at Princeton I heard the mention from the far West talking about Leland Stanford; the men from Illinois praising the new University of Chicago; the men of New England telling of Harvard and Yale, and before my own eyes were rising the exquisitely beautiful buildings of the new Princeton. During all that time, I knew in my heart that there was not in the Southern states a single university whose architecture and construction could be compared with the best of Eastern and Western institutions.


CARILLON | 2015 winter

All this seemed to me strange because the South, more than any other section of America, is the home of beauty and ideals, of romance and courage. So I made up my mind that if the time ever came I would be true to the great University with its dreams and its deeds. So it came to pass that without invitation save from within, and without authorization save from above on September 13, 1909, we came to Atlanta to refound Oglethorpe University. For there was practically no choice in the matter of location. Oglethorpe had been founded originally in the capitol of Georgia, and when later the capitol was moved from Milledgeville to Atlanta there had been an attempt to reopen the University on the site of the old Girl’s High School on Washington Street, where it had lasted for a couple of years until the disorders of reconstruction days rendered further efforts futile. Since that day the little city had grown into a great metropolis and had become the intellectual, artistic, and commercial capitol of the Southeast. Thus did she who was founded by invisible, intangible, and inaudible powers draw another spiritual adventurer to her borders. [The story of Oglethorpe] is the story of the immortality of the ideal which is an illustration of the way in which the beautiful thing persists to influence the lives of men, for here, in the city whose name Oglethorpe never heard and of whom Lanier knew little is being gathered the most precious heritage of all Georgia—the legacies left by her two best citizens, James Oglethorpe, her founder, and Sidney Lanier, her poet. For they are centering on their campus three great traditions.

One is that inimitable excellence of statecraft and philanthropy exhibited by James Edward Oglethorpe, cleanser of the prisons of England and founder of the commonwealth of Georgia.

The second is the tradition that clusters around the incomparable Lanier, first of that sweet chorus of Southern singers whose word-music breathes the same principle of magnanimity and generosity and love. From Oglethorpe they draw the inspiration of humanitarianism and wisdom in politics and government. From Lanier they win their ideals of literature and art. For this Oglethorpe boy, one

among the Southern-born, has won his right to sit down with the nine immortals of American Literature: Bryant, Longfellow, Emerson, Lowell, Whittier, Holmes, Whitman, Poe, and Lanier. His diploma hangs over the desk of the President and his spirit hovers over the campus of his Alma Mater.

The third is the spirit of the university itself into which is gathered all the love of the invisible, intangible, and inaudible greatness of the past and the splendid generosity of spirit, the elegance of soul, and the purity of sentiment of her Lanier and Oglethorpe and to this is added the utter abandon of love of new worlds of science and discovery which is the perpetual gift of God to each generation, and all the solid conviction of the essential sinfulness of veneer and sham or anything short of the absolute truth which is so well expressed in her architecture and construction and management. Two men were standing in the Great Hall of the Administration Building of Oglethorpe University. They had been looking at the beautifully carved oak room, the heavy, quartered oak furniture, the leaded glass-work, the sturdy tiling, the attractive lighting system, and the beautiful lime-stone fireplace with the inscription carved on it,

“Square round and let us closer be, We’ll warm our wintry spirit; The good we each in other see The more that we sit near it.” The visitor turned to the institution’s President and remarked: “Doctor, you have spent enough extra money on this great hall alone to educate one hundred men! Why have you done it?” “Because we plan to educate one hundred thousand men with it,” replied the President.

Thornwell Jacobs, the future president of Oglethorpe, pictured in an undated photo given to the university archives by his granddaughter, Ms. Carrie Lee Jacobs Henderson.

This is the keynote of Oglethorpe University. The purpose of the founders of the institution is to build a school which will express all the fine qualities of a great human soul in its architecture, equipment and appointments.

winter 2015 | CARILLON



In September, Oglethorpe University received a sizable threeyear grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support the “Explorations in the Core,” an initiative to evaluate and implement innovations in the Oglethorpe Core curriculum. The grant is awarded through the foundation’s Liberal Arts Colleges Program. As alumni know well, Oglethorpe’s groundbreaking and awardwinning core curriculum has been a unifying academic experience for all students since its inception 70 years ago. The Oglethorpe Core offers a sequential four-year general education program, deeply rooted in the liberal arts tradition. It has been recognized by the Association of American Colleges and Universities and funded twice by the National Endowment for the Humanities. The “Explorations in the Core” program will enable Oglethorpe faculty to pilot variations of standard courses by testing new methods, texts, and pedagogies. The grant will directly support resources for planning, creating, and implementing the new courses.


“The Mellon Foundation grant will allow Oglethorpe to preserve our Core’s fundamentals, while incorporating new ideas, approaches, and perspectives,” said Dr. Charles Baube, professor of biology and director of the Core. “Our goal is to ensure that this rigorous, interdisciplinary course of study in the arts and sciences remains relevant and continues to be a model for liberal arts instruction in the 21st century.” “This initiative is critical to the ongoing development of the Oglethorpe Core, and builds on seven decades of delivering an interdisciplinary education program that is at the heart of our university,” said President Larry Schall. “While the Core has evolved significantly over time, its goals have largely remained the same: to educate our students to make not only a good living, but an enriching life and a significant difference in their communities.”


CARILLON | 2015 winter


BROADENING HORIZONS By Kelly Holland Vrtis ’97

Tom Hood ’78, a former member of the Oglethorpe President’s Advisory Council, and his wife, Sheila, recently gave a generous $1 million estate gift to Oglethorpe’s Center for Global Education in the Atlanta Laboratory for Learning (A_LAB) to support future students who want to study abroad. It is the largest individual gift to this program ever received by the university.

Tom and Sheila share a rich history in education, travel, and adventure. Tom was working as a corporate pilot, flying out of Peachtree DeKalb Airport, when he enrolled at Oglethorpe and earned his bachelor’s in business administration. He received a master’s in public administration from the University of Mississippi.

“To immerse yourself in ancient culture gives you pause to think about where you are compared to where your ancestors were.” Aviation runs deeply in Tom’s family. His father, an aeronautical engineer for Bell Aircraft, was assigned to the team tasked with designing the first U.S. fighter jet, the XP-59A. Tom’s grandfather was an aviation pioneer, who engineered and piloted his own aircraft just 10 years after the Wright brothers took off from Kitty Hawk. When the U. S. Department of Commerce Aeronautics Branch began to license pilots in 1926, Tom’s grandfather was one of the first 1,000 pilots licensed. While Tom’s interests were focused in flight, Sheila’s remained more grounded, you might say. She studied as an undergraduate at Mercer University and received a master’s in Classics from The Ohio State University. She has studied ancient civilizations, Greek and Roman history, and taught high school Latin and French for 11 years. It was at Ohio State that Sheila received a scholarship to study abroad. She spent two weeks at an archeological dig in Yorkshire, and the experience left its mark.

Together, the two have traveled to England, Scotland, France, and Italy (to name but a few). Each trip seems to hold something for each of their interests—Sheila’s archeology and Tom’s aviation. They’ve explored the World War II aviation museum in Cambridge, the ancient towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum, castles in Spain, and the Ferrari museum in Italy. It seems only fitting that Tom, a third-generation lover of flight, and Sheila, a longtime student and educator, have chosen to share their gifts through study abroad scholarships. “We hope this will benefit students for many years to come,” said Tom. “Students should be able to broaden their horizons, step out of their comfort zones and see the world. To immerse yourself in ancient culture gives you pause to think about where you are compared to where your ancestors were.” “Take nothing for granted,” he continued. “I challenge all of us to honor those who brought us to where we are now, and to reach beyond our grasp to the next big thing.”

Learn more about the Atlanta Laboratory for Learning (A_LAB) at winter winter 2015 2015 || CARILLON carillon

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istie Pea

rce ’1 5

He could be happy to simply consider himself to be an established expert in international affairs. But for Dr. Stephen Herschler, no amount of “book knowledge” can substitute for immersive experiences when learning about a culture or society. He easily “walks the talk,” engaging in the same real-world learning he encourages his students to pursue.


CARILLON | 2015 winter



Dr. Stephen Herschler has lived on four continents, speaks three languages, and has taught comparative politics at Oglethorpe for 12 years. “I’ve spent time in Europe, Asia, and Africa, but the Middle East has always been a gap for me,” he admits. And, with the modernization of the Middle East and Islamic culture a vital part of the current global political conversation, it was a poignant time to gain a personal perspective. This past summer, Dr. Herschler spent 10 days in Turkey with The Atlantic Institute, absorbing the rich culture, historical abundance, and political eccentricity of a country that is suspended between two very different worlds. Turkey has always found itself in an identity crisis between the East and the West, creating a unique (and often confusing) cultural climate. This is why The Atlantic Institute, an Atlanta-based nonprofit, strives to bridge the gap between the Middle East and West by facilitating dialogue and fostering understanding. The organization is a derivative of the Istanbul Center, which bolsters the same goals to embrace diversity and build tolerance. This annual excursion of educators and civic leaders from the southeast is an opportunity to inform those who are in a position to share knowledge with students and citizens, hopefully spreading a better understanding of Turkey. Dr. Herschler joined other educators representing Atlanta-area institutions, including Agnes Scott College, Emory University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Georgia State University, and Morehouse College. The educators’ differing perspectives were a compelling part of the journey and, according to Dr. Herschler, reminiscent of the interdisciplinary conversations he witnesses in his Oglethorpe classes. “Hearing questions and comments from the varying disciplines made every day more interesting,” he said. Indeed, the travelers’ diverse interests sometimes made for spontaneous adventures. While staying in the city of Sanliurfa, a fellow educator expressed interest in Turkish music, prompting their guide to arrange for an outing to a local university. The group was treated to an impromptu concert with classical Turkish instruments.


During the 10-day trek, the crew also visited the cities of Istanbul, Gazi Antep, Ankara, Izmir, and Mardin—each of which contains stunning historical sites and manmade marvels. Greek and Roman ruins are scattered throughout the land, sites of Biblical significance (such as the house of the Virgin Mary and the landing site of Noah’s Ark) are abundant, and of course, monuments such as Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque are “must-see” edifices. According to Dr. Herschler, one particularly striking site was Gobekli Tepe, the world’s earliest known place of worship, which outdates Stonehenge by approximately six millennia. (continued on next page)

Dr. Herschler pictured at the Library of Celsus, an ancient Roman building in Ephesus, now part of Selçuk, Turkey.

winter 2015 | CARILLON


(continued from previous page) Every day, Dr. Herschler and his peers took part in discussions on topics ranging from social reforms in Turkey to interfaith dialogues, and even learned about traditional Turkish carpet making. Each topic was presented from a uniquely Turkish perspective which opened the travelers’ minds to a side of the story they may have never before have heard. Their excursions were led by Turkish guides who were eager to share their knowledge, culture, and history. As Dr. Herschler learned more about the politics and current issues of Turkey, he started to form connections with the course material of the classes he teaches at Oglethorpe, especially Comparative Politics. This course—famous among OU politics majors—surveys a multiplicity of theories on the development and stability of international governments. Upon his return, Dr. Herschler decided to add a series about Turkey to his syllabus, citing his trip as the impetus. “Before this experience, I possessed ‘book knowledge’ of Turkey and of Islam,” he said, “but I did not understand it fully as a living community. Now I know I can address the topic fairly.”

“My new knowledge facilitates connections with students who are interested in the Middle East.” But, this experience affected much more than the content of his courses, he says. “My new knowledge facilitates connections with students who are interested in that part of the world.” In fact, even while still in Istanbul, he connected with Oglethorpe student and advisee John Yager ’15, who was interning abroad for through Koç University in Instanbul. The two were able to catch up and talk Middle Eastern politics over an authentic Turkish dinner. “Now, Turkey is a part of my life,” says Dr. Herschler. “And, I have become more attuned to Turkish culture here in Atlanta.” Asked about his plans to return, he admits he would love to go back to Turkey, but as always, has his sights set on even more international horizons. “I want to go back to Asia. It has been a decade since I’ve visited, and that is quite long enough.” Christie Pearce ’15 has always had a love affair with the written word and—more recently— political science. She hopes to continue her post graduate education by studying political marketing and campaign strategies for female candidates in the United States.


Holly Bostick ’15 sat on the porch of her small cabin drinking a cup of coffee, watching toucans fly before the most breathtaking sunrise she’d ever seen. There was no electricity, air conditioning, or hot water—just a small wooden cot where she slept. And somehow, that was more than enough.


An art history major and Spanish minor, Holly was among a small group of volunteers who traveled to Belize this past summer to assist in archeological excavations at the Maya ruins. She pursued this “life-changing” experience after another—an Oglethorpe-sponsored shortterm trip to Greece in 2013. As part of her studies on ancient art and architecture, Holly had visited an active archaeological dig in Corinth and was captivated. She wanted to find a way to relive that experience. Holly researched similar programs and discovered the Maya Research Program, a nonprofit that sponsors archaeological and ethnographic research in Central America. Holly and approximately 35 other volunteers, including fellow OU student and art history major Emily Prichard ’15, trekked to Blue Creek, Belize, where they joined archaeological digs.

the art of


By Heather Johnston ’17

Each morning, they jumped into the back of pickups and navigated to the excavation sites—usually Xno’ha, an “elite residential complex” discovered in 2013. There, they were “hands on,” organizing remains and piecing together skeletons. Having no experience in anatomy or anthropology, Holly admits she had a bit of a learning curve, but that it was “absolutely incredible and a one-of-a-kind experience.” Back in the U.S., Holly was determined to continue her journey. Oglethorpe art professors Alan Loehle and Dr. Jeffrey Collins recommended that she apply for an internship at The Carter Center, which holds an extensive art collection. Given the competitiveness of any opportunity at Center, Holly felt honored to be selected for the art internship, and credits her academic and global experiences for setting her apart from other applicants. Holly has gained insight into museum operations and experience with fine art, a compliment to her work with artifacts. “The Carter Center’s art collection is very eclectic, with no specific genre,” Holly said. “Many of the items are donations from countries around the world in thanks for the Carter Center’s worldwide efforts in peace. So, a general knowledge in many different art mediums and cultures was crucial for the internship.” Holly graduates in 2015, and while she’s yet undecided about her career path, she knows her options are endless, crediting her ventures while at Oglethorpe. “When I would tell people where I was going and what I was doing, they would always give me a look and ask ‘why?’. My response, of course, being ‘why not?’” she said, laughing. “[My experiences] broadened my sense of the world, and my personal world, specifically. It showed me that there aren’t limitations and I don’t have to settle for any one career. I have options and places to explore and that is what I intend to do.” Heather Johnston ‘17 is a communication & rhetoric studies major, with a minor in business administration. She is currently an intern for OU’s in-house student communications agency, Pegasus Creative, and writes for the Stormy Petrel student newspaper. winter 2015 13 SPRING/SUMMER 2014| |CARILLON CARILLON 13


hack•a•thon /noun/ 1. a competition, usually lasting several days, in which groups of developers and other experts collaborate in computer programming to solve a given issue or challenge.

SENIOR RACKS UP HACKATHON WINS By Heather Johnston ’17 and Renee Vary Keele Haider Khan ’15 doesn't exactly fit the hacker stereotype. But, the Oglethorpe senior, who's majoring in chemistry and minoring in computer science, recently bested the competition to win two back-to-back hackathons, as well as a start-up competition, all hosted in metro Atlanta. A testament to Haider’s skills and training, the victories have also been lucrative. So far, Haider and his teammates have won a total of $13,300 in cash and prizes.

In layman's terms, a hackathon is a competition, usually lasting several days, in which groups of developers and other experts collaborate in computer programming to solve a given issue or challenge. The events typically are kicked off with an introduction to the sponsoring companies and a presentation about challenge the competitors will tackle. The sponsoring companies then give the developers access to their technology to create their solution. Haider's first competition was the AT&T Mobile App Hackathon, which focused on real public safety issues. Atlanta emergency medical responders, police officers, dispatchers, fire and rescue teams were onsite to discuss with the developers the challenges they encounter in their jobs. In response, Haider and his team built a hybrid mobile-web app called Safety Net to assist EMS responders in large scale disasters by tracking personnel in real time. They were awarded first place in Best Overall Public Safety App, first place in Best Use of AT&T’s WebRTC API, and second place in Best Use of Telerik Technology. The next hackathon, for interactive wearable financial apps, was sponsored by Global Payments Inc. and CaixaBank in Barcelona. “At the second hackathon, the theme was wearables,” Haider explained, “so we were given smart watches and were told to come up with novel solutions to five challenges, ranging from ease of payment, user authentication, security, alternative payments, and design for payment services and transactions.” Haider and his team, Charge Forward, were awarded the $10,000 third prize for their smartwatch application that lets the user change credit card payment method with the flick of a wrist and uses NFC (near field communication) technology to process transactions on the spot. Most recently, Haider competed in Atlanta Startup Weekend, hosted at Coca-Cola Company headquarters. Teams pitched startup ideas to judges (and an audience) and were evaluated on customer empathy (did their idea address a real problem for real people?), execution (did it work?), and their business model (how would it successfully compete in the market?). Haider’s team, GatherCam, pitched their idea and business plan for a program that would compile photos posted on various social media sites by different people at the same event, such as a wedding. Their idea was a true crowd pleaser and won over the judges, earning them first place in judge’s scores, as well as the audience choice award. After graduation, Haider hopes to continue to create innovative technology. He plans to move to California to work in Silicon Valley and eventually to start his own technology company. Haider is confident that his education at Oglethorpe, particularly his minor in computer science, has helped him in his recent accomplishments. “I highly suggest to Oglethorpe students that if they have a passion for technology to take a computer science minor," Haider advises. "I personally think the tech industry is extremely fun to work in (and) the applications are endless. We are moving into an economy where knowing how technology works is a currency.”


CARILLON | 2015 winter


CENTER EXPANDS PERCEPTION By Parker Rhodes ’15 When the National Center for Civil and Human Rights opened in downtown Atlanta this past summer, several Oglethorpe students and alumni were proud to have played a part and found parallels between the Center’s mission and their Oglethorpe experience. First envisioned by civil rights leaders Evelyn Lowery and former United Nations Ambassador and Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, the Center aims to “empower people to take the protection of every human’s rights personally through sharing the stories of courage and struggle.” It is one of the only cultural attractions in the world to connect the American Civil Rights and the Global Human Rights Movements. Senior Ruwa Romman began her internship in June in the Center’s membership department, but her work quickly expanded to include assignments in other areas. “I helped out on projects they didn’t expect me to be able to handle,” said Ruwa. “I had interdisciplinary work that involved multiple departments. The idea that I could work for marketing, membership, and development, and still maintain all those responsibilities was really valuable.” Ruwa credits Oglethorpe with helping her to learn to conduct in-depth research, write well, and consider different perspectives. “One of the first things they told me (at the Center),” says Ruwa, “was that we love having Oglethorpe students. We, as students, are jaded to it because we hear it so much, but it’s true. I say I’m from Oglethorpe and people respond ‘oh, we’ve had great interns from there.’” Ruxanda Renita, who came to study at Oglethorpe after graduating from Oxford Brookes University in England, worked with the Center’s communications team. Her internship, as well as her Oglethorpe classes, she says, helped her to leave her comfort zone, to embrace diversity and other cultures, and to view the world through others’ perspectives. “Life is not one way or another, but rather a puzzle,” Ruxanda says, “You are encouraged and trained to meet those challenges.” Ruxanda now holds two bachelor’s degrees in art business and history, and found the hands-on experience with American art and culture to be invaluable. It was a memorable moment,

she says, the first time she walked through the museum and saw traditional and digital art combined to tell so many compelling stories. The Center “represents a bridge between the past and future of American culture,” she says. Cedric Floyd ’13, who wrote a history of the Center’s inception, describes the Oglethorpe community as a microcosm of what the Center strives to inspire on a global scale. He points to the Oglethorpe Core, which challenges students to think about themselves as individuals, the global community, historical perspectives, and how all of those relate. “While I was at Oglethorpe, I saw firsthand how many different people worked side-by-side in a harmonious community.”

Ruwa Romman ’15, pictured above with U.S. Congressman John Lewis (D-Ga.), a leader in the Civil Rights Movement.

Ruwa, who serves as Student Government Association President and leader of COEXIST, a campus organization that promotes interfaith dialogue and community service, also sees the Center’s ideals reflected on the Oglethorpe campus.

Oglethorpe students make the time to come out and say, ‘I do not want to be part of a world that is intolerant’ and that is also what the Center does. “Oglethorpe students make the time to come out and say, ‘I do not want to be part of a world that is intolerant’ and that is also what the Center does.” According to Ruwa, the National Center for Civil and Human Rights also is “the kind of place that you walk through and you realize there’s something bigger than you.” She recently accompanied a group of Freedom Riders, including Georgia U.S. Congressman John Lewis, as they toured the museum. “These are people who lived this history,” marvels Ruwa, “and to get a chance to walk with them, and to listen to their memories…that was one of the best experiences I’d ever had.” Parker Rhodes '15 is a communication and rhetoric studies major and a history minor, hockey enthusiast, and bibliophile. He hopes to enter into a career in sports PR. winter 2015 | CARILLON



Arnie Sidman is a team player. As a youth, he enjoyed playing baseball and watching the local minor league team play in Washington, D.C., where he grew up. Though he didn’t pursue sports any further, coming of age in both a governmentimposed segregated America, followed by defacto segregation, eventually forced him to view his home team, “Team America”—as seriously flawed and broken.

Above: Tony Golden’13, author Arnie Sidman, and Emmanuel Brantley ’15 In his new book, From Race to Renewal: It’s Not All Black & White, readers journey with Sidman, an Oglethorpe advisory trustee, from his earliest realizations of the concept of race, through his life-long exploration of the topic. “I first became aware of race in the summer of 1955, a year after Brown [vs.Board] and I was the only white kid in my class,” recalls Sidman. “I wasn’t comfortable being in the minority like that. But I realized that I had a problem and set out to fix it.” Since then, Sidman has been fascinated by the study of race relations in the U.S., and committed to finding a more effective way to bring people together.


It’s Not All Black and White was years in the making, and the election of President Barack Obama in 2008 re-ignited Sidman’s selfdescribed “obsession” and motivated him to get his ideas published. Along the way, he enlisted a number of Oglethorpe students to intern to support the project by assisting with research, social media, financial accounting, and recordkeeping. They included Ashia Nnorom ’11, Jacquelyn McFadden ’12, Annie Morgan ’12, Tony Golden ’13, Christian Locklayer ’14, Khadejah Scott ‘14, and Emmanuel Brantley ’15. Brantley, an accounting major, maintained financial records for the book project. He says interning on the publishing team offered practical career experience, but also sparked his interest in race issues outside the U.S. “Reading his book was an insight into a white American’s perception of race issues,” said Brantley, who is currently studying in Spain at La Universidad de Francisco Vitoria, an OU partner school in Madrid. “And now that I am in Spain it has given me an intellectual curiosity about blacks here (many of whom come from Nigeria) and what the racial climate is here.”

If we don’t address this congenital defect in our body politic, we will continue our imperceptible slide from a position of global leadership.

His memoir documents that journey, all the while proposing ways in which the individual and communities can play a part in this effort, shunning politically-driven ideas and government-imposed programs. “I believe our inability to confront our racial hang-ups has been a significant contributing factor leading to [our nation’s moral drift.]… If we don’t address this congenital defect in our body politic, we will continue our imperceptible slide from a position of leadership in today’s world,” writes Sidman.


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Chloey Mayo ’10 is an avid photographer, writer, and kickball enthusiast. During the day, she works as a web content developer in Atlanta. While at Oglethorpe, she earned her degree in communication and rhetoric studies and “minored” in track & field, cross-country, and all things athletic and fun.

(Top) Characters at the Smith Family Farm portray family, neighbors, enslaved workers, and friends. (Above) The Tullie Smith House on the Smith Family Farm is one of several historic buildings located on the Atlanta History Center grounds.


to research the Smith Family, who operated a Civil War era farm, by stepping back into time. Now located on the grounds of the Atlanta History Center, the Smith Family Farm includes “a plantation-plain house built in the 1840s by the Robert Smith family. Originally located east of Atlanta…the house survived the destruction in and around Atlanta during the Civil War,” according to the history center. Authentic re-enactors onsite add to the ambience, allowing visitors, and the Oglethorpe students, to interact directly with history and witness their stories come to life. Hoping to enhance the permanent exhibit, the curator with the help of the Center’s archivists challenged the Oglethorpe students to unearth insights into the economic lives of the Smith Family, both during and after the Civil War. Specifically, they were interested in the effects of inflation, caused by the Confederacy printing money to finance the war. Students also

CIVIL WAR ECONOMICS Student research & service unearth farm life realities By Patrick Grayshaw & Renee Vary Keele This past summer, an Oglethorpe class embarked on a historical journey, without leaving Atlanta. As part of the service-learning course, Research into Economic History of Georgia and the South, students worked with faculty members, Dr. Peter Kower and Dr. Richard Cook, and the Atlanta History Center, to apply theories in economics to research and answer questions about a key part of Atlanta’s history. “This summer course focused on investigating the economic impact of the arrival of the railroad in

the northern part of Georgia, specifically in DeKalb and Floyd Counties,” explained Dr. Kower. “Students considered which economic factors were necessary for farmers to move from simple self-sufficiency into specializing in commercial crops, cotton and grains, for sale in the growing market. One well known economic historian refers to this type of market expansion as Smithian growth, based on the insights of Adam Smith.” For this course, the Atlanta History Center served as the ideal community partner and offered an unusual real-life learning experience. Students were able

attempted to determine the relative wealth of the Smith Family, in comparison to other families during the mid-to late 1800s, and even to see how the Smiths would be compared to families today. During their research, students had the unique opportunity to dive into historical archives and learn how to read and interpret primary sources. They spent days in the archives, reading diaries and other historic documents that contributed to the economic profile they pieced together. The students’ review and interpretation of those documents became a key part of their learning experience and service contribution.

In addition to traditional class requirements, service-learning courses require that students complete 20 hours of service for a community partner or agency. Service-learning provides students with hands-on opportunities to give back by contributing to community partners’ missions, as well as to use the knowledge they’ve gained in the classroom. After their service experience, students are then able to apply it back to the topics and theories discussed in class. As the students began to understand more about the Smith family and its contemporaries, they uncovered that, although the family was in the top 10 percent of land owners at the time, they actually ran a rather simple farm house, lacking the luxuries that the larger antebellum plantations to the south could afford. Students concluded that the family lived a full life, producing most of the basic necessities and were able to use the farm’s surplus to barter for anything else the might need. The students were able to contribute their research and new insight to the Atlanta History Center, but additional research remains to be done. Hopefully, future economics service-learning classes will be able to continue the project, and possibly replicate the process for other areas at the history center. Dr. Kower also is interested in Sweetwater Mill, a textile mill burned during the Civil War, as another potential subject for students’ investigation into the economic history of Georgia and the South. “With this service-learning course model, our students are able to explore that intersection of history and economics, while also giving back to our community,” said Dr. Kower.

winter 2015 | CARILLON



Psychology Team Dives In to Research the Benefits of SCUBA

Swimming with Giants By Debbie Aiken ’12

“To be a part of a project in my undergraduate career that may impact a group of people in a significant way is something most cannot say.” —Katee Gmitro ’16


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LifeWaters co-founder Jody Paniagua, Dr. John Carton, LifeWaters co-founder Charley Wright, and OU students Katee Gmitro and Harry Dodsworth

Prior research has shown that SCUBA training can positively affect the mental well-being of participants and even help reduce psychological symptoms. Working with the students in his psychology laboratory, Dr. Carton designed a longitudinal study that involves measuring participants’ mental health prior to entering SCUBA training with LifeWaters and comparing it to their mental health after their certification, after their first dive, and a year later. A “wait list” control group will provide data for comparison. “Many veterans with paralyzing injuries suffer from a variety of anxiety and mood disorders, for which there is continued need to identify therapies that produce lasting positive effects,” says Dr. Carton. “Anecdotal observations support the hypothesis that SCUBA may go well beyond teaching dive-related skills, to also positively affect the mental well-being of participants and even help reduce psychological symptoms.”

Dr. John Carton, psychology professor and chair of the Behavioral Sciences division at Oglethorpe, recently led an a innovative research project to investigate the psychological benefits of SCUBA training for individuals with spinal cord injuries and other mobility impairments. He partnered with LifeWaters, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping spinal cord injured patients and disabled veterans experience the benefits of SCUBA, and enlisted the help of students in his psychology lab at Oglethorpe. In conjunction with Veterans Day, LifeWaters brought 12 veteran divers and 6 dive “buddies” specially certified to assist divers with spinal cord injuries and limited mobility to the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta to dive in the monstrous tank containing 16-foot whale sharks and hundreds of other species. Dr. Carton and two students from his psychology laboratory, Katee Gmitro ’16 and Harry Dodsworth ’16, observed the dive and spent the entire day immersed in the process of SCUBA therapy. While on site, Dr. Carton, Katee and Harry were able to meet and interview all the divers, their dive support staff (buddies) and families. They also toured behind the scenes of the entire aquarium and met the director of the aquatic therapy program and the founding directors of LifeWaters. They observed the divers entering and exiting the large tank where they were diving—which included the whale sharks and 12-foot span manta rays. And, they had the chance to watch the whale sharks’ feeding during a private viewing.

A small scale study sponsored by the Cody Unser First Step Foundation several years ago provided some preliminary data to support the hypothesis. Unfortunately, that study was not formally published, replicated, or expanded upon. That is where Dr. Carton’s laboratory students stepped in. He brought in his students from his laboratory to help them “better understand the research and to mentor them in the development of additional hypotheses for this research project.” “Oglethorpe’s faculty truly does want to encourage and expose you to the possible fields you may venture into,” said junior Katee Gmitro. “This research project will no doubt help me narrow down what I would like to do in the future and provide necessary experience with research.” While at the aquarium, the students collected qualitative data for future hypothesis development and witnessed firsthand the therapeutic outcomes of the program, for both physical and mental health issues. “You could tell these men and women had been planning this dive in their heads for a long time and it’s obvious that LifeWaters has changed their perspectives and lives,” said Katee. “I know my education is very different from many universities and to be a part of a project in my undergraduate career that may impact a group of people in a significant way is something most cannot say. For this, I am extremely grateful and do not take that position lightly.”

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Research has long been a vital component of the psychology curriculum at Oglethorpe, and this year, with the support of a new on-campus research grant, four OU professors are working collaboratively to take their research full throttle. Dr. John Carton, chair of the behavioral sciences division, and his colleagues, Drs. Lisa Hayes, Justin Wise, and Leah Zinner, remain active scholars, pursuing personal research projects while providing opportunities for students to gain research experience in their areas of interest. Recently, they combined their own academic interests and expertise with initiatives in Oglethorpe’s strategic plan to begin an unprecedented threepronged, long-term psychology study, in which Oglethorpe students will play various roles.

(l-r) Psychology faculty Dr. Leah Zinner, Dr. Justin Wise, Dr. John Carton, and Dr. Lisa Hayes

The grant supporting the study aims to strengthen the research component of the Atlanta Laboratory for Learning (A_LAB). Founded in 2013, the A_LAB helps students to identify opportunities, both in Atlanta and around the globe, to put their classroom education into action out in the real world through study abroad, civic engagement, professional development and internships, and undergraduate research. A call for proposals for the grant, the first of its kind to be offered at Oglethorpe, stipulated that the potential research projects should support one of those areas. Six grant proposals were received and after a competitive review process by the Offices of the President and Provost, and the Center for Civic Engagement in the A_LAB, the psychology department’s proposal, Fostering Academic Achievement and Student Retention, was selected. “When the A_LAB grant opportunity was announced,” says Dr. Carton, “rather than each of us submitting individually, we thought we would propose a study that allows us to take advantage of the good working relationships that we have already and accomplish something on a grander scale.” Academic achievement and student retention are topics that hit close to home, and their research has the potential to directly inform Oglethorpe’s policies and positively impact student success. The project includes three different, but related studies, and five goals (see study abstracts to the right).


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Work is already underway on the values affirmation study. First-year students participating in the study were identified at the beginning of the fall semester, and a small group of psychology students are learning best practices for data gathering. “We gathered some students who we knew had an interest in research and had them administer a pre-test,” Dr. Carton explains. In order to assist with the study, all student volunteers must receive training from psychology faculty and pass certain benchmarks to ensure consistency in their testing. “Before we go into the middle schools, research assistants will receive training on how to administer our middle school assessments, as well as learn how to deal with any potential issues that might come up while collecting data with children, such as what to do if the child is not able to read a questionnaire, or does not want to participate,” Dr. Hayes says. “Once all data is collected, students will be trained in how to analyze the data using advanced statistics. All training sessions involve hands-on practice so that students are well prepared for the next step in the research process.” The research team plans to follow up with the same students each semester, and from one academic year to the next, to measure the effects of the values affirmation study. “We’ve set ourselves up for a longitudinal study, which is a lot of work,” Dr. Carton admits. “At a small college like Oglethorpe where the emphasis is on teaching, faculty are still scholars, but it’s hard to do it alone. If we collaborate with our colleagues, benefit from each others’ expertise, and help each other stay motivated, it can be a fun experience, but it can also help the project to be completed faster than it would have otherwise.”

TUDY to MATION S IR eir strengths F F A S E identifying th in s nt VALU de stu t minority ue faced by

s to assis onfidence iss This study aim hen threat, a self-c e yp ot re ste shown that w pe with studies have r io Pr . help them co e, ps ou ority gr e (for exampl rticularly min by a stereotyp ed ct fe many, but pa af is r at oup th a particula longs to a gr d” to excel at a student be a not “suppose is ity ic hn et af y fected as er or be negativel n ca t a certain gend en “is to , em hiev ns Dr. Zinner r academic ac study,” explai n io at subject), thei rm fi af le about lues inding peop goal of this va threat by rem e yp result. “One ot n re ste of rtant, and whe gative effects they are impo hy w reduce the ne , n em ow th nt to has been sh at are importa e intervention Th .” the values th es liv r n ei in th ps betwee en important rformance ga they have be ill es, reduce pe ad gr s’ nt e research w de Th stu e retention. ov pr to help to raise im d an d nts, schools an minority stude arby partner majority and dents from ne stu ol ho inar (FYS) sc m e Se middl a First-Year in d involve 250 lle ro en s the study. dent to administer glethorpe stu who will help 250 new O s, nt de stu gy OU psycholo course, plus


1 2 3 4 5

To foster student achievement among children (grades 5-8) at Oglethorpe’s partner schools in Atlanta To foster student achievement among Oglethorpe students, particularly those who are most at risk (under-represented minority students and first-generation college students) To understand more completely and potentially increase retention rates among Oglethorpe students To connect classroom learning to experiential learning opportunities in the community by providing Oglethorpe students with a high quality research experience To enhance the undergraduate research experience for Oglethorpe students


K STUDY This study, w hich coincide ntally shares will measure a name with differences in one of the pr student achiev ofessors, of instructor fe ement based edback give on different ty n on assignm pes level psycho ents. It will in logy students volve 100 up at Oglethorp pe rreceive feed e. Two groups back on an of students w assignment— ill giving feedba either wise fe ck that assuag edback (a w ay of es mistrust by and assures emphasizing students that high standar they are capa ds meeting thos ble of improv e standards) ing with effo or neutral feedba rt and opportunity to ck. They will revise and re then be give -submit. A blin n the a difference d grader will in the improv de termine if ther em ent of the as e is feedback the signments ba students rece sed on the ty ived. pe of

A clinical psychologist by training, Dr. Carton’s interests lie in understanding the causes and treatment of mental health issues, the effects of rewards on motivation, and the measurement of people’s abilities to send and receive non-verbal communication. With a background in developmental and educational psychology, Dr. Lisa Hayes is interested in examining the impacts of mental health problems and stress on academic achievement, and is especially looking forward to interacting with middle school students and teachers. Dr. Leah Zinner is a social psychologist by training and enjoys studying areas of prejudice and stereotypes. Dr. Justin Wise’s expertise lies in developmental psychology with a specialization in pediatric neuropsychology. He is currently serving as a methodologist and statistician for a number of studies being conducted at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Emory University, and Georgia State University. “The department has selected its faculty to be teacher-scholars,” says Dr. Carton, “and together we cover all of the main areas of the science.”

“The A_LAB is all about enhancing deep learning experiences for our students and working with our faculty on undergraduate research is a key piece of that.” — President Larry Schall Oglethorpe students from all majors will be invited to be involved in the studies. “We’ll cast a broad net with the A_LAB’s help,” says Dr. Carton. “Anyone who would like to try out a psychology study and see what it’s like from an insider’s perspective will have a chance to participate.” Indeed, Dr. Carton and his colleagues are looking forward to working with students from other disciplines as well.

“We love to teach and motivate our students in the classroom environment and watch the light bulbs go off,” he says, “but we equally love the opportunity to work one-on-one with ANALYSIS OF OU RET students. In psychology, that’s often in ENTION D In collaboratio ATA n with Dr. Am y Palder, Ogl the lab, and now we’ll also be able to research and et horpe’s direct effectiveness, or of institutio this study will na work with students in other majors l data to look an alyze years of for patterns th collected stu at may reveal de who may be looking at this research study has the nt re asons for stu potential to sh dent attrition. ed light on w “This through a different lens.” why some le hy som

e students sta ave, and whe y at Ogletho n to intervene, research team rpe, ” says Dr. Car plans to shar ton. The psyc e th e results of th hology professional eir studies no psychology co t only with th mmunity, but e Oglethorpe also with fello administratio w faculty mem n in an bers and effort to inform student expe future improv rience. “I thin ements to the k that if we ca even in a ve n show a po ry small way sitive impact , th ro on retention, ug h any of thes for Oglethorp e three studies e,” says Dr. W , it’s a great ise. thing

winter 2015 | CARILLON



GREEK LIFE : redefined By Debbie Aiken ’12

benefiting the Circle of Sisterhood, which works to “(remove) educational barriers for girls and women facing poverty and oppression.” The annual spring Greek Week brings daily activities for fraternity and sorority members, including the headliner event, Greek Sing, a song and dance competition that last year benefited the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network. This year, the Office of Greek Affairs will hold the first-ever Greek Awards, where chapters will be recognized for their achievements in a number of areas, including most service hours, most improved average GPA, and most funds raised for their respective organization. In addition, Dean of Students Michelle Hall will choose an organization to win the Dean’s Choice Award and crown the winner of the top prize: Chapter of the Year. GREEKS ARE STUDENT LEADERS

Nationally, college students involved in Greek life have a higher GPA and are more likely to graduate than non-Greeks. Indeed, many of Oglethorpe’s Greek students hold leadership positions in other organizations in the OU community, including the Student Government Association, Alpha Phi Omega (a national, service-based co-ed fraternity), and athletic teams, and some members work as resident assistants or orientation leaders. “We look for guys that have potential to be a leader, in the fraternity or outside of it in extra-curricular activities,” says Alex Attebery ’16, officer of Delta Sigma Phi and president of the Interfraternity Council. Greek life at many colleges is often plagued with headline-making issues like alcohol abuse, hazing, and sexism. Fraternities and sororities around the country are struggling with dwindling enrollment, and some colleges and universities have eliminated Greek life altogether, deeming the system too problematic to fix.

“Joining Greek life has given me the tools and skills I’ve needed to become a leader,” says Elisabeth Carter ’15, vice president of Chi Omega. “I think if it wasn’t for some of the opportunities that Greek life provided me, I wouldn’t be as prepared to take on the leadership positions that I have now. Our organizations provide opportunities for members to become leaders.”

That is not the Greek life that exists at Oglethorpe. Here, the fraternity and sorority system is expanding rapidly—and has, in fact, doubled from five to 10 chapters in the just the past five years. Perhaps not coincidentally, it also focuses on positive outlets and outcomes like volunteerism and service and enhancing campus community.

We all know each other and hold each other accountable to make sure that we are upholding our values and representing our organization.


All national Greek organizations require community service for each chapter. While this may be seen as a burden for students elsewhere, giving back seems to be second nature to students at Oglethorpe, where service is already an integral part of the culture. All first-year Oglethorpe students participate in Orientation Day of Service and complete additional volunteer hours through Petrel Points, a system that helps to instill a cycle of giving back that carries over into Greek life. In fact, many sorority and fraternity members complete far more service hours than is required, says Ana Bravo ’16, president of Chi Omega and the Oglethorpe National Panhellenic Council. “If you look at the big service events that Oglethorpe holds, there are always a lot of Greeks participating.” Every Greek chapter at Oglethorpe also identifies a nonprofit to support throughout the year by planning events and activities to raise funds for their chosen cause. (The added benefit is it also builds community and helps to recruit new members.) Annual favorites include Greekapalooza, a party on the quad hosted by Chi Phi with live bands and good food, with proceeds benefiting RAINN (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network). New this fall was “Trick or Trot,” a 5K race held on campus and hosted by Oglethorpe’s Panhellenic Council, with registration fees 22

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So, why has Oglethorpe’s Greek life been able to flourish, while so many others are struggling to stay alive? Perhaps it’s a combination of commitment to service, creating a welcoming campus community and a good set of rules. Ask Oglethorpe Greeks this question and their answer is loud and clear: we hold each other accountable. “I like to think that it’s just because we are smaller chapters,” says Caitlin Munroe ’16, president of Sigma Sigma Sigma. “It’s not like at big schools where a chapter may have 100 people. We all know each other and hold each other accountable to make sure that we are upholding our values and representing our organization and not doing the types of things that you hear about at other schools.” “Since we are a small school, I think we may pay attention to and follow the rules more than people at bigger schools might,” adds Ana Bravo. “It really makes you thankful for the community that we have here at Oglethorpe.”

Alpha Phi Alpha OU’s newest Greek organization, Alpha Phi Alpha, joined the campus community just this year, and was originally founded at Cornell University as the first intercollegiate Greek-letter fraternity for African Americans. WOMEN’S SORORITIES

Alpha Sigma Tau The official chapter animal of Alpha Sigma Tau, founded in the 1999-2000 academic year, is the frog and their open motto is “Active, self-reliant, trustworthy.” Chi Omega The oldest Panhellenic chapter on campus, originally founded in 1924 and re-chartered in 1969. Sigma Sigma Sigma “Ever Forward” is the unofficial motto of Sigma Sigma Sigma, founded in 1987, and is represented by the sailboat, a testament to its continual forward motion always progressing towards its destination.


Photo supplied by Campus Classics.


Oglethorpe Greek chapters strive to maintain positive relationships with their alumni. Each holds a Founder’s Day event and invites alumni chapter members back to campus to celebrate what is great about their fraternity or sorority. Each chapter also has an alumni adviser, who may be an Oglethorpe alumnus or from another university, as assigned by their national organization. Many chapters also have active alumni associations in the Atlanta area, where all former members of their national council can maintain the bonds formed during college. During Oglethorpe’s annual Alumni Weekend, each chapter holds an open house, where they enjoy meeting and visiting with alumni chapter members.

Kappa Sigma The mission of Kappa Sigma, founded in 2012, states that the fraternity strives to complement and enhance the educational mission of Oglethorpe University. Chi Phi Founded in 1969 on the basis of truth, honor and personal integrity, timeless values which guide the fundamental purposes of the fraternity. Sigma Alpha Epsilon Founded in 1859, is the 11th chapter of SAE to be founded, and is one of the few fraternities founded in the Antebellum South that is still in operation. Delta Sigma Phi Members of Delta Sigma Phi, originally founded in 1922, wrote a national song known by chapters across the country. The fraternity had closed, was rechartered in 1985, closed again in 2008, and was revived once again in 2013.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Formed in 2012, Alpha Kappa Alpha was founded on the campus of Howard University and is the oldest Greek-letter organization established by African American college-trained women. Epsilon Iota Psi The first African American sorority on campus, Epsilon Iota Psi is a local chapter founded by students at Oglethorpe in 2012, with the motto “Empower to inspire progress.” GREEK PEEK

Members There are 123 fraternities and sororities in the U.S., comprised of a total of nine million members. There are 750,000 current undergraduate members in 12,000 chapters on more than 800 campuses in the U.S. and Canada. Network The Greek system is the largest network of volunteers in the U.S., with members donating more than 10 million hours of volunteer service each year. Philanthropy As alumni, Greeks give approximately 75% of all money donated to universities nationally. More than $7 million is raised each year by Greeks nationally. winter 2015 | CARILLON



SC R Cindy Vaios, now assistant to the athletic director, has coached at Oglethorpe almost seven years; spending most of her time at OU as head coach of women’s golf. She says that a coach is just as much responsible for the student athlete’s physical and mental wellbeing as is their athletic success. Among others, she lists their roles as entering the realm of mentoring, fundraising, recruiting—even housekeeping and being a social media expert.

Coaches Play Pivotal Role in Student-Athlete Success By Chloey Mayo ’10

When you hear the title “athletics coach,” what comes to mind? For many, the term conjures imagery of a sharply-focused leader marking lineups, creating plays, and leading locker room pep talks. Though that may be a part of their job, the role of the athletics coach (especially at the collegiate level) extends far beyond the locker room, and even beyond sport.


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“I think that for some people, the first perception is that you’re just out playing that sport with the [athletes],” remarks Vaios. “But on the collegiate level, good coaching is really part of the [students’] overall experience. We’re just as much interested in how they’re doing in the classroom and in their future after college as we are in their commitment to the team.” Becky Hall, Oglethorpe’s athletic director, agrees and pushes her coaches to take an active role in mentoring and being a resource for their athletes in all aspects of their college experience. “At a Division III school it is imperative that we teach our scholar-athletes how to be well-rounded and good ambassadors of the university in all that they do,” says Hall. “They are not only students, but athletes, leaders on this campus, and my staff should be preparing them for such.” “Part of this is by being available to them at a moment’s notice,” continues Hall. “Coaches are ‘always on’ in the lives of their athletes. It’s about making sure that we are teaching them life lessons through sport—lessons that include, commitment, dedication, dealing with adversity, communication, teamwork, integrity, character, etc. Coaches’ roles are so much more detailed than just recruiter and coach. [They] quite possibly spend less time coaching nowadays, and more time managing their team’s academic, athletic, and social responsibilities. It is a great responsibility, and one that our coaches do not take lightly. We

appreciate that these families entrust their 18 to 22-year-olds to us, and we take that charge quite seriously.” Coaches also are occupied with the logistics that come with fielding a team of college players—those that have less to do with sport-specific training. These could include transportation issues, maintaining safety on the road, and helping athletes to field class conflicts due to team travel or personal issues affecting their participation in an athletics program.

“We try to keep an open communication with professors so that students understand their responsibilities, and that, especially for academic reasons, if they need to step away from the program, they do so at an appropriate time,” says Vaios. “I’ve had a student athlete struggling in the classroom, and after taking them aside, we worked with the Academic Success Center and their professor to get it right. I’ve pulled athletes from playing until

RE! R they’re back on track by going to class, getting good grades, and showing that they were progressing. Today, academic study tables are a requirement for freshmen, and the Academic Success Center keeps an eye on them as well.”

To help improve the overall student-athlete experience at Oglethorpe, the athletics department has introduced a new initiative called GA2MES, (pronounced “Games”). GA2MES, an acronym for global/national experience, academic success, athletic success, mentoring, engagement and sportsmanship, will incorporate all six of these goals to foster growth and involvement between athletics and other part of campus. Eight of OU’s 16 teams will take part in the initiative during its first year: baseball, women’s basketball, men’s and women’s lacrosse, men’s soccer, men’s and women’s tennis, and volleyball. Starting next year, all 16 teams will participate.

As part of GA2MES, the teams will participate in a global and/or national experience, with the squads having the opportunity for out-ofregion competitions, international travel, and community service. These trips will put a focus on multicultural experiences, which will give the student-athletes the opportunity to learn and grow. Over fall break, the OU men’s basketball team embarked on a five-day trip to Costa Rica, which included two exhibition games, a community service project at a children’s center, and a variety of cultural experiences and adventures, like zip-lining through the rain forest. “We grew closer as a team, and I think came home a better team,” said Head Men’s Basketball Coach Philip Ponder. “More importantly, the trip hopefully gave the players a different perspective on things, and opened their eyes to the fact that there is a great big world out there, where people have way more similarities than they do differences.


A strong emphasis on engagement will give teams the opportunity to participate in meaningful community service projects together, both abroad and at home. OU’s men’s tennis will work with the Atlanta Tennis Youth teaching fundamentals of the sport during the off season. Women’s tennis will volunteer with PATH Academy, an elementary school adjacent to campus. Baseball will devote time to the Northside Youth Organization Christopher League. “Our students are servant-leaders, and participate in many service projects that put them in situations outside of their comfort zone,” says Becky Hall. “As we try to teach compassion, understanding, empathy, we feel the engagement piece is critical in learning those characteristics.

The GA2MES initiative also relies on faculty participation. All teams will choose a faculty mentor who will serve for the entire year, providing support to the team both academically and on game day. In addition, the mentors will actively participate in team functions and potentially joining the team on select road trips. So far, women’s basketball has chosen Dr. Michael Rulison, professor of physics, to serve as their faculty mentor; baseball has selected Dr. Lynn Guhde, associate professor of management; and, Dr. Kathleen Peters, lecturer in Core Studies, is mentoring the men’s soccer team. “I believe as the initiative continues to gain understanding and momentum, it will demonstrate all that is special and unique about Division III athletics,” says Hall. “One of the pieces of this that excites me most is our march to academic excellence and the mentoring piece. With those getting stronger, and with athletics connecting with faculty, some of the negative stereotypes [about

(Facing page and above top) Team building was the name of the game for OU men’s basketball in Costa Rica. (above center) Women’s golf showed up (very) early to share their team and school spirit during local news station 11 Alive’s live on-campus morning broadcast. (above bottom) The men’s baseball team practiced their skills with nearby PATH Academy students, on campus to view the exhibition Stealing Base: Cuba at Bat (see next page).

student-athletes] will start to come down. We do not have a bunch of ‘dumb jocks’ that are only here for their sport. Quite to the contrary, we have extremely bright students who are leaders. Faculty involvement helps provide positive relationships between students and faculty, staff and students, and my staff and faculty. We are all ‘one team,’ so to speak. That is a win/win in my book.”

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Cuban politics, culture & history explored through the art of baseball



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OUR CREATIVES Fly balls, strikeouts, and homeruns are all reminiscent of America’s favorite pastime, but a different perspective on baseball has revealed a more profound side of the sport. Stealing Base: Cuba at Bat, the fall exhibition at the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, offered a visual exploration of baseball through the varied perspectives of Cuban-born artists. Presented by the Shelley and Donald Rubin ’56 Exhibition Series, Stealing Base featured works by 16 established and emerging artists: Jesoviel Abstengo-Chaviano, Alejandro Aguilera, Carlos Cárdenas, Yunier Hernández Figueroa, Duniesky Martín, Frank Ernesto Martínez González, Bernardo Navarro Tomas, Juan Padrón, Douglas Pérez Castro, Arlés del Rio, Perfecto Romero, Reynerio Tamayo, José Angel Toirac, Harold Vázquez Ley, Villalvilla, and Quisqueya Henríquez. The exhibition was curated by Rachel Perera Weingeist, former director and curator of The 8th Floor in New York, and Elizabeth Peterson, director of the OU Museum of Art, and featured an essay by Orlando Hernández, a Havana-based curator. The original exhibition concept resulted from a long collaboration between Weingeist and Hernández that culminated in summer 2013, with the debut of Stealing Base at The 8th Floor Gallery in New York. This was the first time the exhibition was shown outside New York. The arrival of baseball in Cuba coincided with the emergence of the independence movement in 1868, and the sport quickly became a collective emblem of national identity. A love for baseball connects Cubans across race, religion, politics, and geography. Stealing Base presented the works of a diverse range of contemporary artists, living in Cuba and in the U.S., who have found potency in the imagery of the sport. Responding not only to the sport as national pastime, their work has further sought to convey larger complexities within Cuban society. “Without question, baseball is a great generator of meanings,” wrote Hernandez in his essay. “Baseball has played an important role in the impugning, critical, and revolutionary spirit that Cuban artists have demonstrated when faced with acts of dogmatism, official intolerance, and censorship.”

As a teaching museum, OUMA deliberately identifies and presents exhibitions, like Stealing Base, that complement students’ education and offer the opportunity for an immersive experience. Oglethorpe faculty members from various disciplines used the exhibition as a resource to link the concepts and theories discussed in their classes with the concrete artistic representations of Cuban history, politics, and culture. A class of international students, enrolled in the Education First language program on campus, studied the exhibition shortly after its opening and, according to Peterson, found familiarity and comfort in the stories told through the artwork. Many of the students, from countries around the world, could relate to the political and cultural images, narratives, and meanings reflected in the pieces. Peterson’s own Art & Culture Core class used the exhibition to study propaganda and protest art, works that reflect social movements or activism. Peterson lectured on the same topic as part of the lecture series that accompanied Stealing Base. “One of my freshman students, who is an avid baseball player, is using two works in Stealing Base for his comparison paper for the course I teach,” shared Peterson. “A show like this, with broad appeal across interests such as sports, art, history, and sociology, is perfect for sparking student enthusiasm while supporting our liberal arts mission.” Stealing Base lecture series videos are available at Lecturers included Jorge Fernandez, vice president for global commerce at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, who arrived in the U.S. from Cuba at the age of 10 through Operation Peter Pan, and Hoji Silva Miret, a freelance consultant in leisure, who spoke about travel and tourism and U.S./Cuba relations.

(Facing page) Reynerio Tamayo, El Cuarto Bate (The Cleanup Hitter), 2013, Shelley and Donald Rubin ’56 Private Collection. (top) The exhibition served as an on-campus learning experience for numerous students. (below and below left) Arlés del Rio, Esperando que caigan las cosas del cielo or Deporte nacional (Hoping That Things Fall from the Sky or National Sport), 2012, Shelley and Donald Rubin ’56 Private Collection.

“A show like this, with broad appeal across interests such as sports, art, history, and sociology, is perfect for sparking student enthusiasm while supporting our liberal arts mission.”


Conservation & Sustainability By J. Todd Bennett

Following an extensive restoration of the creek and wildlife sanctuary on campus during the construction of Oglethorpe’s new Turner Lynch Campus Center, environmental sustainability is once again at the center of our growth strategy. In September 2014, Oglethorpe announced a partnership and long-term land lease agreement with real-estate development company Gables Residential to construct, operate and maintain Gables Oglethorpe, a mixed-use luxury apartment community on campus. With Oglethorpe’s residence halls near capacity, the development will offer an additional living choice for students. Preparation for the site construction began later that month. As part of the development, Gables Residential has engaged Southface, a green building consultant, to pursue a LEED-comparable Earthcraft Multifamily Certification for the Gables Oglethorpe project. This project is Gables’ sixth EarthCraft certified project to date in Atlanta. In recent years, Southface has partnered with Oglethorpe’s unique Urban Ecology program and has provided hands-on learning opportunities in sustainable building practices for students on Oglethorpe’s historic campus. Together with Gables Residential and the City of Brookhaven’s staff arborist, Kay Evanovich, Oglethorpe is taking steps to implement best management practices to preserve native trees and plants while making plans for the re-vegetation of the site when construction is completed.


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Play Central Role in Gables Oglethorpe Project Several initiatives have already been completed: In May 2014, Gables commissioned M Arbor Guard to perform a complete



survey and analysis of all the specimen trees on the property. Only 11 of the 24 specimen trees on the property were found to be in good condition. Gables will re-landscape the property with 150% of the total caliper inches of healthy specimen trees removed. Gables and Oglethorpe collaborated with the Georgia Native Plant Society to relocate a variety of plant specimens from the property, including native azalea, trillium, Solomon’s Seal and hypericum.


Oglethorpe worked with the Friends of Brookhaven Park Association to spade and relocate 22 trees (totaling 101 caliper inches) to nearby Brookhaven Park.

View supporting site surveys, reports, and videos, plus additional updates on the development’s progress, at


Large majestic trees are an important feature of Oglethorpe’s beautiful campus. I came here as a student in the ’60s, and there was a large American Beech tree that always caught my attention. It was located on the Peachtree Road side of Phoebe Hearst Hall. In past years, its huge trunk and towering limbs made one pause to acknowledge and appreciate its magnificence. According to the history passed down, the tree was growing at that spot when the cornerstone was laid at Hearst Hall in 1915. However, in recent years it began to show signs of distress, and the efforts and attention of arborists were not successful in saving the tree. Perhaps it simply died of old age.

A Short History of Oglethorpe’s

MOULTHROP BOWL By Robert Bowden ’66

In thinking about how this tree, which had been a part of this campus since the first permanent building, could remain in some type of commemorative way, it occurred to me to contact Matt Moulthrop, a third-generation woodturning artist of the internationally known and highly regarded Moulthrop family. Fortunately for all of us, Matt accepted the challenge. When the dead tree finally had to be removed from the spot it had occupied for more than 100 years, large sections were put aside. Matt came to the campus to choose some pieces that showed potential and arranged to have them transported to his studio in Marietta, Ga. There, Matt worked his magic over the past year to give one of Mother Nature’s creations further life— in the form of a beautiful Moulthrop Bowl. Oglethorpe University joins many fine museums, such as the Woodruff Arts Center and The Smithsonian, along with discriminating collectors throughout the world, in proudly displaying a Moulthrop Bowl, the roots of which have been intertwined with the life of this university. Adapted from a April 25, 2014 presentation to the Oglethorpe Board of Trustees Robert Bowden ’66, an Oglethorpe Trustee Emeritus, lives in Marietta, Ga. and Sanibel, Fla.

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When Bertram Levy finished high school in Long Island, N.Y., he had two choices: go to college or go to Vietnam. The college preparatory student was bright, no doubt, but he would have preferred to pursue his lifelong passion for music rather then enter college. However at his parents’ insistence, he acquiesced to apply. It was already late August, so they went to a college placement firm where Bertram was offered a variety of schools. Oglethorpe appealed to him because he could combine his education with his passion for southern banjo playing. Oglethorpe welcomed him with open arms, and soon transformed him into the life-long learner he is today.


RENAISSANCE MAN By Kelly Holland Vrtis ’97

“When I arrived at Oglethorpe, I began with the college’s Core curriculum and a spark of academic curiosity was ignited. One day in my first quarter I passed an open building next to Lowry Residence Hall. Inside, I met Dr. Roy Cohen who showed me his electron microscopes. I was fascinated and when he offered me an opportunity to do a small project in electron microscopy, I accepted.”

Bertram Levy pictured with Kirk Sutphin in the back cover image of their CD, Two peas in a pod.

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Though the project was short-lived, that simple gesture changed Bertram’s life. He was inspired to pursue the sciences and spent the next three years studying chemistry and playing music. At graduation, Dr. Cohen urged him to go on to graduate school. Cohen arranged for him to interview with Dr. Geoffrey Bourne at the Yerkes Primate Center at Emory University, which offered him a full fellowship in histochemistry and electron microscopy.


Bertram spent the next three years completing his credentials for a PhD. At the insistence of his advisor, neuroanatomist professor emeritus Marion Hines, he went on to Duke University’s School of Medicine, where he graduated in 1968 with honors. “I remember sitting in lecture halls among students who were furiously taking notes on everything the professor was saying,” he recalls. “Instead, I simply listened to what was being said. I’d go home, read the text, then take a break and play my instrument. And I’d think about what I read while I played. That’s how I learned.” While at Duke, Bertram met fellow graduate student Alan Jabbour with whom he shared a passion for the music of the region. Together, with bandmates Tommy and Bobbie Thompson, they formed the Hollow Rock String Band. The band was dedicated to playing only the repertoire learned directly from the old time fiddlers. Their 1967 album, “Traditional Dance Tunes,” continues to sell all over the world and is credited with launching the traditional American fiddle music revival of the ’60s and ’70s. One of the cuts, “Over the Waterfall,” is included in the Smithsonian’s CD, “The History of American Folk Music.” After finishing at Duke, Bertram accepted an internship and subsequent residency and fellowship in urology at Stanford University, where he spent seven years. During that time, he developed his unique banjo style, which is a crossover of bluegrass and old-time claw-hammer styles played on nylon strings. He eventually debuted this unique banjo style in his now classic recording, “That Old Gut Feeling.” He was awarded banjo player of the year by Frets magazine in 1974. When, in 1974, it was time to look for a job, Bertram recalls going into a men’s store near Stanford’s campus to try on suits. None of them felt right and he realized that he wasn’t ready for an academic job. Instead, he saw an opportunity to pursue his music, so he traveled to Ireland with his musical friends as a band. In the following year in Dublin, Bertram studied Irish music and its relationship to the roots of American folk music, as well as performing and recording with other musicians. He also took a position as surgical registrar at the Urologic Institute at the Meath hospital in Dublin. He returned to the states in 1976, declined an offer to be an assistant professor at Stanford, and instead chose to settle in Port Townsend, Wash. Bertram, his wife, Roberta, and daughter Madeline have called this small maritime community in the Northwest “home” for nearly three decades. Here, he has balanced a life of a private medical practice, an active musical career and his lifelong sailing hobby—something that began back when he was a boy in Long Island. Bertram has built 10 boats, including a 24-foot boat, “Able,” that he and Roberta sailed to Hawaii.

Levy pictured with one of his nautical creations (top) in his workshop (facing page) and on the waves in a finished product (bottom).

Bertram’s never-ending curiosity drove him to a new musical passion in 1988 when he met Argentine musician Astor Piazzolla. Bertram was so moved by Piazzolla’s Nuevo Tango that he traveled to Buenos Aires, acquired a bandoneon (the national instrument of Argentina) and began his bandoneon studies. He formed the Tangoheart Sextet which continues to perform regularly throughout the U.S. and Europe. Since 2005, he has studied regularly in Buenos Aires with the great master Rodolfo Daluisio at the Conservatory de Manuel de Falla. Musician, traveler, healer, boat builder and lifelong student, Bertram Levy is proof positive that an Oglethorpe education can change your life. “I am afraid I have a rather elitist view of a liberal arts education. For me, the primary purpose of liberal arts colleges is not for job training. Rather they are places to learn to assemble information, to learn to write cogently, and to be a critical thinker. That is the gift I received from Oglethorpe.” Visit for a sampling of Bertram’s music and to catch his performance schedule. Kelly Holland Vrtis ’97 lives outside Indianapolis, Ind. with her husband, Matt, and children Amelia and Franklin. She is a marketing freelancer and currently chairs the Alumni Board’s Communications Committee.

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Dear friends, These three iconic buildings are a vital part of Oglethorpe University. The very first stanza of our Alma Mater pays homage to these imposing edifices, with the evocative imagery of “gray stone and mortar.” Dr. Thornwell Jacobs, who revived Oglethorpe after its post-bellum dormancy

Hearst. Lupton. Lowry.

and served as University President, referred to these buildings as our “Silent Faculty.” For many of us, these three gothic structures on the academic quad were the first things we saw on campus, giving us our first impression of Oglethorpe. They are part of the common experience that binds all Oglethorpe alumni; every single living alumnus has passed through the halls of Hearst, Lupton, and Lowry during their time at the university. In 2015, we celebrate a historic milestone for these buildings: the100th anniversary of the only Oglethorpe campus generations of students have ever known.

Every single living alumnus has passed through the halls of Hearst, Lupton, and Lowry during their time at the university. They are part of the common experience that binds all Oglethorpe alumni.

This anniversary is a time of celebration. It is a time to raise a glass in honor of the many things Oglethorpe and its alumni have accomplished in the 100 years since the Peachtree Road campus opened. It is a time to be proud that Oglethorpe, like the petrel, has weathered many a storm and come out stronger for it.

This anniversary is a moment to reflect. It is a time to honor the administrators, faculty, students, and friends who have played important roles in the Oglethorpe story, who are no longer with us. It is a time to contemplate the educational mission of our university—what it has been, what it is, and what it should be.

This anniversary is a chance to contemplate the next 100 years. We have recently improved our physical campus (including the opening of the stunning Turner Lynch Campus Center)—and more new buildings and campus improvements are on the way. In the coming years, we will continue to reach out into the Atlanta community, offering our students the best opportunities to learn in and interact with this world-class city. It is exciting to think of the many ways that current and future Oglethorpe students will make a life, make a living, and make a difference.

This anniversary calls us back to our nest. I hope that you all come back to campus and join me for Alumni Weekend, April 16–19, 2015. The 100th Anniversary of Oglethorpe’s Atlanta campus is the perfect time to come “back to the nest,” and enjoy the opportunity to look up at Hearst, Lupton, and Lowry Halls as though for the first time. With all my best Austin Gillis ’01, President Oglethorpe University Alumni Association

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Living Life Class Notes 1950s Shelly Godkin ’52 enlisted

in the U.S. Air Force as an aviation cadet after graduation. Following his commission as a Second Lieutenant, with the aeronautical rating of pilot, he attended the fighter pilot advanced training school at Luke AFB, Ariz. During his 31-year career with the Air Force, he served as fighter pilot, staff officer, director of operations, commander, and public affairs officer. He has logged more than 4,000 flight hours—mostly in fighter aircraft—and has been stationed in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Thailand. A veteran of both the Korean and Vietnam wars, he retired from the Air Force in 1983. Through the Air Force Institute of Technology, Shelly earned his master’s in communications and PR from Boston University. He and his wife, Aloma, have called Fort Collins, Colo. their home for the past 32 years, where Shelly has

1980s been a longtime supporter and leader of the Rotary Club. 1 Chris Fulton ’80 and Marnie Ellis ’82 were married on the

Oglethorpe University quad, where they met as teens and became reacquainted years later at Chris’s 30th class reunion. Among those in attendance were classmates Betsy Duggan Johnson ’80, Jill Lesko Burnett ’82, Keith Burnett ’80, Mike Voeltz ’83, Jamie Stanton ’81, Larry “Max” Lehman ’80, Eric Flax ’77, Jim McCoy ’80 and Ken Eckerle. Adding to the fun, alumni Sharon Rudy Moskowitz ’82, assisted Marnie with event planning! Marnie has a PhD in psychology and is in private practice. Chris works for Clair Global as a sound engineer, and is currently assigned to the James Taylor tour. They split their time between Dunwoody, Ga. where Marnie lives and Franklin, N.C., where Chris has a home.

Scott Haight ’89 and his partner, Jim Hackney, have relocated to New Haven, Conn. Scott has been with RLI Insurance for 10 years and Jim is working at Yale Divinity School.

Davis ’90; Howard Furstein ’92 and Katie Stewart; Zack ’95 and Chris Schram Butler ’95; Robert ’92 and Amy Langham Canavan ’96; Rodney Drinkard ’92 and Shelby

2 Victoria Stevens Chapman ’89 has published her first

4 Andrea Spencer Shelton ’91, president and founder of HeartBound Ministries, a Georgia-based prison ministry, has been appointed to the Georgia Board of Corrections by Governor Nathan Deal. She sees this is an answer to many years of prayer and an opportunity to bring about positive change to the prison community.

novel, Sweet Silver Ranch. It is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and in e-book format. The Christian fiction novel was edited by Victoria’s late father, Mark Stevens, a longtime member of the Oglethorpe Board of Trustees from 1990–2003.

1990s 3 Since 1996, several alumni

members of Delta Sigma Phi have gathered with their families for a mini Oglethorpe reunion each Labor Day weekend. The group most recently included five couples and 11 children, ages six to 17. Pictured at the 2014 gathering (couples, left to right) are: Dennis ’92 and Renita Rocker


5 Wendy McCall Beck ’94 released

a paranormal trilogy called The Naming of Legends. Proceeds from book one, 9th Life, go to the Good Mews cat shelter. She serves as the Membership Chair for the Georgia Romance Writers.

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Golden Petrels Shine


On May 16, 2014, commencement day for the class of 2014, Oglethorpe also welcomed its newest class of Golden Petrels, alumni celebrating 50 years

since graduation. Kenneth “Ken” P. Davis, a member of the Oglethorpe Class of ’64 Reunion Committee, shared his memories from the celebration.

“When we arrived on campus, we quickly realized that the university has come a long way since our days! We had a great start to the weekend by having lunch in the brand new campus center, which was so much nicer than the “pit” we used to hang out in the basement of Hearst! That was followed by a dinner hosted by President Schall where we were impressed by some of the new advances Oglethorpe is making throughout the world. These events, along with a wonderful commencement


ceremony and the lunch following, really made me realize that the sense of community we all fell in

6 Brooke Bourdélat-Parks ’95

love with during our time here was still well and prosperous today. This weekend allowed me to go

married Michael Gorman on October 19, 2013 in Destin, Fla. The wedding took place on the beach at Henderson Beach State Park at sunset. It was followed by a reception in a picnic pavilion at the park. Brooke and Mike live in Parker, Colo.

back down memory lane and relive some of those great memories.” Find out what the Class of 1964 Golden Petrels have been up to for the past 50 years! (above) Pictured, front: Carolyn Loughborough Frangiamore, Charlotte Smith Winesness, Gretchen Stevens White, Jane Lincoln Bundy, Jo Payne Fields. Back: John Day, John Winesness, Bill Aitken, Linda Crowe Chesnut, Brenda Davis Harker, Bea Hasty Favre, Dennis Kerr, Jim Bundy, Buddy Harrison, Steve Figler, Ken Davis, Donny Donald, James Delay. (top, left) Delmar Brinkley, Chuck Frangimore, Carolyn Loughborough Frangimore (top, right) President Larry Schall, Linda Crowe Chesnut, Jim Bundy, Ken Davis (bottom) Jim Bundy, Brenda Davis Harker, Jo Payne Fields, Jane Bundy, Sandra Meeks Wagner ’66, Hoyt Wagner


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7 Marge Ramos ’95 returns after

a brief hiatus to the OU Special Events Department as a TV/film/ print media locations liaison. Due to the booming film industry in Georgia, Oglethorpe has received a surge of requests to use the university’s beautiful campus as a backdrop for numerous TV shows, feature films, commercials and other media-related projects. Marge works primarily in commercials and music videos and is currently a locations coordinator at BET Networks. For any inquiries about filming at Oglethorpe, contact her at










8 Jamie Walker Ball ’95 recently sought game show redemption on “The Chase,” a fast-paced trivia challenge on the Game Show Network in which Jamie and two teammates faced “The Beast,” an Oxford-educated trivia master with an IQ of 155. You may recall that Jamie previously appeared on “Jeopardy!” back in 2004, and while she left with only fond memories, her appearance on “The Chase” netted Jamie and her teammates a total of $175,000 in prize money! She credits her OU education for giving her the broad base of knowledge that prepared her to take a stand against “The Beast.” When she is not appearing on game shows, Jamie works for the City of Los Angeles Fire Department as an internal affairs investigator and lives in Chatsworth, Calif. with her husband, Ryan, and sons Atticus and Sullivan. Jason Reese ’97 accepted a senior

mobile engineer position with LinkedIn in Mountain View, Calif. in June 2014.

9-10 John Breton ’97 recently caught up with Andrew Shahan ’00 at the 2014 U.S. Open in New

York City. The two confirmed tennis junkies weren’t satiated by just watching the greats play, they also took to the courts nearby to try and recreate some of their former Oglethorpe tennis glory from the ’90s. “Despite getting aced by Andrew’s first four serves and nearly impaled by one of them, we managed to play some pretty competitive and decent tennis on the fast indoor courts in Queens.” Andrew lives with his wife and three kids (ages five, four and three) in New Orleans, where he serves as CEO of ARISE Schools. John, his wife Anna ’02 and their six-year-old daughter live in Atlanta, where John works in video advertising technology. 11 Amy Katz Bonn ’99, her husband, Dave, and their sons, Henry and Warren, welcomed Patrick Coe Bonn on January 24, 2014 in Montgomery, Ala. Patrick weighed 8 lbs., 3 oz. and measured 19 in.

2001 12-13 Austin Gillis ’01 and his wife, Molly, welcomed future petrel Emily Barrett Gillis on May 29, 2014. This smiling bundle of joy is well-loved by her entire family, including her uncle, Colin Gillis ’04, and aunts Miranda Atnip Gillis ’06 and Mary Claire Gillis ’10. 14 Chris Benner ’01 was recently

promoted to partner at Bennett Thrasher LLP in the personal financial services practice. He specializes in providing comprehensive tax and financial planning advice to small business owners, attorneys, corporate executives and other high net individuals.

she examined the impacts of indigenous fire use, European colonization, and climate change on vegetation and fire regimes in California during historic and prehistoric times. 15 David ’02 and Megan Wallace Jenkins ’02 live with their three

daughters, Cora, Hannah and Autumn in Vancouver, B.C. David is the senior pastor at Kitsilano Christian Community Church and Megan works as the assistant to the academic dean at Cary Theological College. Megan recently traveled to Africa to study global Christianity under leading theologians and practitioners as a part of a study group with Regents College, where the Jenkins’ attended graduate school.

2002 Alicia Cowart ’02 completed

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22 2006 Brittany Bennett Parris ’06


19 2003

16 Christian ’01 and Melinda Vegso Blonshine ’03, together

with big brothers Tyler (five) and Carson (two), are excited to announce the birth of Liam Andrew Blonshine. Liam arrived on April 9, 2014, weighing 8 lbs., 5 oz. and measuring 21 in. Cathy Iconis ’03, CPA, founder

and CEO of Iconis Group, LLC, has been named as one of CPA Practice Advisor’s 2014 40 Under 40. This list of honorees includes high achievers from across the accounting profession. It is designed to recognize the best and brightest young leaders in the industry who have distinguished themselves by their thought leadership, professional contributions and commitment to client service.


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17 Kim ’03 and Ryan Williams ’04 are excited to announce the birth of future petrel Lily Kathleen Williams. She was born on April 10, 2014 weighing 7 lbs., 1 oz. and measuring 21 in.

2004 18 Brent Jones ’04 and his wife, Tracey, welcomed their son, Jaxson Randall Jones, on June 24, 2013. He weighed 7 lbs., 10 oz. and was 20 in. long. 19 Leigh Cooper ’04 and Mark

Godfrey are happy to announce the birth of their second child, Leon Francis Godfrey. Leon was born two months earlier than expected, on January 9, 2014, in San Francisco, Calif. He and his family are doing great! Brandi Booker Roach ’04 has embarked on a new journey as the proud owner/operator of her children’s shoe boutique, Parrish Heel Kids, located in Peachtree Corners, Ga. It is a

place where care, comfort and craftsmanship meet to inspire a smartness of unique style. They aim to offer shoes and accessories with distinctive style that encourages every playfully active kid a sensibility of self. Brandi is thrilled to finally have the opportunity to utilize her combined knowledge and experience in the industry, paired with her love for serving and giving back to others, with her OU educational background to support her in this new venture.

2005 20 Kimberley Nicholson ’05

married Ryan Friedman January 18, 2014 in Clearwater Beach, Fla. Mark DeLong ’04 officiated. Kimberley and Ryan live in Smyrna, Ga., where Kimberley is a Metrics Analyst with TMP Worldwide. Ryan is a graduate of Florida State University and is a media planning supervisor with U.S. International Media.

earned her digital archives specialist certification from the Society of American Archivists. She currently works as an archivist at the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum in Atlanta, which is part of the National Archives & Records Administration.

2007 21 Brittany Corbett ’07 was

captain of the 2008 Final Four Oglethorpe women’s basketball team and recently graduated from the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. She is thrilled to be back in Atlanta practicing general dentistry as an associate with Dr. Mark Sayeg of Start Smiling Dental, which provides a full range of cosmetic, general, and family dental care. Dr. Corbett would love to welcome all Petrels as clients! Send her an email with your mailing address to receive a $100 gift card toward any service.



2008 22 Nelson ’08 and Alyson Adkisson Davis ’04, along with

big brother Luke, announce the birth of Isaac Matthew Davis on January 24, 2014, weighing 7 lbs. and measuring 18.5 in. Nelson Davis ’08 has been named

one of this year’s Zen Masters for his innovative work using Tableau software. He’s among an exclusive handful of Tableau users to receive this title, joining only 18 other recipients since the 2012 inaugural class. Zen Masters are selected by Tableau employees and customers who vote for the past year’s most outstanding practitioners of the company’s software. In order to be designated a Zen Master, Tableau users must meet a number of criteria, which include demonstrating their deep understanding of data visualization, sharing their expertise as teachers and evangelists, and contributing innovative ideas and designs to the larger Viz community.

ISABEL TONKS GRAY ’33 August 4, 2014

SARA JACOBS BAGEN ’49 August 22, 2012

CLAIRE BURNS WALLACE ’71 December 16, 2014

JAMES C. MCCLANAHAN ’41 July 14, 2014

DELORIS COLEMAN ’51 June 17, 2014

LANDRUM FINCH ’36 January 1, 2010

PEGGY GREGG SCOTT ’51 December 23, 2014

CHARLES PARKER SULLIVAN ’71 February 4, 2014


HILDA HAVER GOODELMAN ’52 February 14, 2014

LANE M. HOLLAND ’74 January 3, 2014

LT. COL. HERMAN L. CAMPBELL ’39 October 29, 2014

WILLIAM F. CUMMINGS ’54 October 4, 2014

ALICE B. CARR ’76 May 14, 2014

JUANITA H. DAVIS ’54 April 2, 2009

DOROTHY C. SNEAD ’78 June 20, 2014

LUCY LINDSEY SMITH ’59 December 29, 2014

LYDIA BARRIEAU ’80 August 6, 2014

SAM G. HUDGINS ’61 June 30, 2014

VICKI FRANK BACHMAN ’84 January 8, 2014

REBECCA ANNE FLOYD ’62 January 31, 2014

DR. S. TRUETT CATHY ’97H September 8, 2014

J. CABOT GUPTON ’63 October 20, 2014

BRAD T. WHITE ’10 April 16, 2014

COL. J. O. PARTAIN JR. ’40 November 28, 2014 PHILIP J. MANASSA ’42 April 29, 2014 JOHN MEACHAM JR. ’42 MA ’43 December 17, 2014 HUBERT B. STEPP ’43 July 28, 2014 FRANCES BURGESS TURNER ’43 October 16, 2014 EMMA BALDWIN VAN DE GRIFT ’45 April 13, 2013 HERBERT J. FEINBERG ’46 December 27, 2012 SHERMAN C. WARD JR. ’46 October 1, 2014 THOMAS N. PIRKLE ’48 June 20, 2014

JACKIE WAYNE POWELL ’63 February 23, 2014 KENNEDY SMITH NEAL ’66 December 1, 2014 ROSE GOSWICK ’68 May 3, 2014 JIMMY RAY HOGGARTH ’69 August 13, 2014 TEDDY L. COLLINS ’70 March 20, 2014

GARY G. JONES ’72 March 29, 2013

Former Trustees and Faculty HEYWARD L. SIDDONS April 8, 2014 HOWARD PARKER May 27, 2014 GEORGE E. GOODWIN January 21, 2015

Zachary Reed Parris ’08 received

his Master of Education in Professional Counseling, specializing in College Student Affairs, from the University of West Georgia in May 2014.


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The Oglethorpe University Archives, located in the Philip Weltner Library, identify, collect, preserve, and catalog objects related to the growth and development of the university, from its beginnings in Midway, Ga. in 1835 to the present. The collections include photographs, manuscripts, records, publications, rare books, journals, and artifacts that help to tell the story of Oglethorpe’s history and traditions.



Stephen J. Schmidt ’40 was known as “Mr. Oglethorpe” for his countless contributions to the university as president of the National Alumni Association and chair of the Board of Trustees. This letterman sweater is from his days as quarterback for OU’s football team. The section of Peachtree Road in front of campus was named in his honor.



One of only approximately 1,500 created, this amazingly-detailed facsimile of the Book of Kells was obtained by OU through a 2008 National Endowment for the Humanities Core grant. Used as a primary resource in history and art classes, it has been enjoyed both by the OU community and the public.


This unique, silver stormy petrel belt buckle was owned by Gilbert Wood, class of 1934, and worn proudly.



President Franklin D. Roosevelt and (then Georgia Governor, later US Senator) Richard B. Russell autographed this 1932 OU Commencement program owned by Gilbert Wood ’34.










Mailed to OU Librarian Elwyn de Graffenreid from Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 1920, this postcard is one of the greatest mysteries of the OU Archives. There is no explanation as to why Sir Arthur sent it or why it is addressed to “Oglethorpe University, Atlanta, CANADA.”



Released in 1933 to commemorate the bicentennial of the founding of Georgia by General James Edward Oglethorpe, this stamp was postmarked on Oglethorpe Day 1933 by the Oglethorpe Post Office, formerly located at the corner of Peachtree and Lanier Drive. It was signed by Thornwell Jacobs, OU president and postmaster.



This is a rare, uncirculated sheet of 100 1933 General Oglethorpe commemorative stamps on loan by Reference Librarian Eli Arnold ’06. 38

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In 1923, OU President Thornwell Jacobs (in true Indiana Jones-style) discovered the long-lost graves of General Oglethorpe and his wife, Lady Elizabeth. This document gave him permission to exhume the bodies to verify that they were, in fact, the Oglethorpes. He had hoped to return the bodies to campus and inter them under the Lupton Bell Tower. Jacobs received permission from the British government, Church of England, and U.S. government, but the City of Savannah, believing that the Lord and Lady should be interred in the city he founded, objected to (and eventually sabotaged) Jacobs’ plan. The Oglethorpes remained in England.



Used during Rat Week, when new OU freshmen were “hazed” by upperclassmen, this stormy petrel-emblazoned paddle was donated by Tony Paredes, class of 1961.




This life-sized, bronze bust of Atlanta-born poet, publisher, and inaugural OU Professor of Poetics Ernest Hartsock was created by artist Fritz Zimmer to commemorate Hartsock’s short life. Only 27 when he died, Hartsock (who had also been a professor at Emory and Georgia Tech) left a lasting influence on the poetry world of 1920s and literary criticism.



This life-sized, bronze bust of OU alumnus and Civil War poet Sidney Lanier was created by Edward Clark Potter for Piedmont Park in Atlanta. Potter may be best known as the sculptor of the lions Patience and Fortitude outside the New York Public Library. After multiple vandalisms where the bust was thrown in the Piedmont Park lake, Oglethorpe was asked to display and keep the bust safe.



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Created for the re-charter of the university in 1913, these medals and printing blocks show the Boar’s Head crest and updated seal used on diplomas at Old Oglethorpe, located in Midway, Ga., with the Latinized “Universitas Oglethorpiensis.”



OU’s namesake and Georgia founder General James Edward Oglethorpe published updates on (and advertisements for) his Colony of Georgia in the Gentleman’s Magazine, a periodical founded in London in 1731. The issues provide a treasure-trove of primary, first-hand information on the British Empire.

Do you have an Oglethorpe object or collection that you’d like to add to the archives? Please contact Reference Librarian Eli Arnold ’06 at or 404-364-8885.

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Non-Profit Organization U.S. POSTAGE PAID Atlanta, GA 30319 PERMIT No. 523

4484 Peachtree Road, N.E. Atlanta, GA 30319

4484 Peachtree Road NE Atlanta, Georgia 30319

CELEBRATE Years 1915-2015 Learning and Living

on Peachtree Road

ANTICIPATE April 16-19, 2015 Alumni Blast from the Past Weekend at Oglethorpe University

The annual Masquerade Ball of 1950 was held in October, and students who attended were to dress in costume. The fall of 1950 saw several other student celebrations, one of which was the Boar’s Head Fat-Man Thin-Man basketball game on November 16. All participants and attendees were charged a twenty-five cent admission fee and were encouraged to dress in burlesque fashion, as it was the theme for the game. See more of Oglethorpe from the 1950s on page 24.

PARTICIPATE February 1, 2015 Registration Opens

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