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AHA!

SOUTH CAROLINA HONORS COLLEGE / UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA / WINTER 2016

Harshita Jain’s big-picture plans plus A SALUTE TO ‘BIG JIM’ PEARCE THE LIBERTY FELLOWS CONNECTION THE YOUNGEST PUBLISHED AUTHOR ON BURNS IN THE WORLD


Contents

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WINTER 2016 South Carolina Honors College Dean / Steven Lynn Managing Editor / Writer / Aïda Rogers Director of Communications / Anna Redwine Honors College Partnership Board Marshall Winn Chairman Roger Barnette Jay Cain Dan D’Alberto Bill Duncan Lori Clos Fisher Kevin Hall Steve Hibbard Anita Hood

Catherine Heigel Vice Chairwoman Eddie Jones Jodie McLean Ben Rex Thomas Scott Jacob Shuford Sherri Timmons Jeff Vinzani

Stay Connected University Home Page: sc.edu SCHC Home Page: schc.sc.edu Facebook: facebook.com/SCHonorsCollege Twitter: twitter.com/SCHonorsCollege LinkedIn: “South Carolina Honors College Alumni” University Creative Services / University Writers Group The University of South Carolina does not discriminate in educational or employment opportunities or decisions for qualified persons on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, genetics, age, disability, sexual orientation, or veteran status. The University of South Carolina has designated as the ADA Title II, Section 504 and Title IX coordinator the Executive Assistant to the President for Equal Opportunity Programs. The Office of the Executive Assistant to the President for Equal Opportunity Programs is located at 1600 Hampton Street, Suite 805, Columbia, SC; telephone 803-777-3854. UCS15329 1/16

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In this issue 4/

Lessons in Generosity Gifts to the Honors College will pay dividends for years to come.

8/

ON THE COVER Uncomfortable with Comfort Belser Scholar Harshita Jain learns about the inequities of health care in remote eastern India.

10 / The Liberty Fellows Connection Eleven SCHC alumni have been named Liberty Fellows, making S.C. better for everyone.

11 /

Polishing the Burnsian Torch 2015 SCHC graduate Joseph Durant has already become a published Robert Burns scholar, thanks to timely assistance from the Honors College.

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2015 alumni honorees The Honors College recognizes two of its own at Homecoming. Cover photograph, above and pages 8–9 by Sarina Dodhia, class of 2016


Dear alumni, It was April 1970, and for five summers I had inhaled cotton dust and mastered the art of creating fine mobile home furniture. I was graduating from Greer High with a verbal job offer to continue that career. But I was student body president (Spider and Hawk had endorsed me); I’d called the defensive signals for the football team (I could remember where everyone lined up, and I could run really fast for about three yards); I had an SAT score that surprised everyone (“He seemed really sleepy and confused to me….”); and I played in a rock band that had cut a record and played major venues in fifteen states, including the Myrtle Beach Pavilion. I didn’t know what to do with myself, but I thought I had options.  In some alternate universes, there might be Steve Lynns who are mobile

DEAN STEVEN LYNN

home furniture tycoons, Pee Wee League football coaches or recently deceased rock musicians, but in this one I had the offer of a scholarship from the University of South Carolina. And I had Karl Beason, a luminous high school English teacher, who had given me some glimpse of the joys of rigorous thinking (not that I had actually experienced it).  Karl told me, “You’re an idiot if you don’t go to the University of South Carolina,” and Karl had never to my knowledge been wrong. (Some people were surprised when he actually flunked the mayor’s son, but no one thought it was erroneous.) The Honors Program was getting cranked up, and I’d met some really smart and interesting people on my campus visit. And so, in this universe, I went to USC, and here I am a few years later, delighted to be full circle, still hanging out with honors students.       

Karl B e

ason

I’m here because of that generous scholarship. And we are able to attract superb students today because of generous donors, providing the scholarship funding that allows us to compete successfully. I just wrote a thank-you note to Karl Beason, and I wish I could write a note to the people who funded my scholarship. But I can say now, on behalf of all our SCHC students, and the staff and faculty who enjoy teaching and working with these students, “Thank you.” Thank you for helping us exceed our campaign goal, and thank you for continuing to support, befriend and speak well of the Honors College. Our students are the beneficiaries — which they will appreciate more and more as time goes on, I am sure. Sincerely,

Steve Lynn

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Lessons in generosity Helping young people to one day help others — that’s the spirit of Carolina’s Promise, USC’s recently completed $1 billion campaign that launched several initiatives to assist Honors College students. Here’s just a sampling:

DEBORAH Y. EDWARDS ENDOWMENT Provides free passports for freshmen to study abroad

In 2015 Catherine Heigel, a ’92 international studies alumna, created a fund to support and encourage study abroad among Honors College students. Inspired by an initiative started by adviser Jim Clark in 2010 to help freshmen get passports, the endowment assists with passport funding. As SCHC director of off-campus education, Clark knew how intimidating and timeconsuming getting a passport can be, especially for freshmen with little travel experience. Enter Heigel, who studied in the Netherlands during high school and college, then at Oxford for law school. She named the fund in her mother’s memory. “My mother had an adventurous spirit and lived out many of her own dreams through my foreign travel experiences,” said Heigel, noting her mother never traveled abroad. “She and my father sacrificed financially to make these experiences possible for me.” Seeing new worlds opens bright minds. “The students come back and they’re different,” said Clark, describing one student who’d never been on a plane. “Even though she’d gotten soaking wet on a boat in Scotland, she came back smiling.” More donations are welcome to provide even more passports for Honors College students.

ARR

IVE * VIS IT P ASS *

PASSPORT

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01 J AN 2 016

Professor Kate Flory and student researcher Kari Benson

WILLIAM A. MOULD OUTSTANDING SENIOR THESIS AWARD Recognizes a senior whose work will make a significant impact in his or her field of study and larger community

Mould’s family created this annual award to memorialize the late USC French professor and Honors College dean after his death in 2015. Kari Benson, a 2015 experimental psychology graduate, received the inaugural award for her three-year research on the use and misuse of stimulant medication among the USC student population. Kate Flory, an associate professor in psychology, nominated her student: “Kari is the most talented undergraduate researcher I have worked with in my 10 years at USC.” Benson is earning a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Ohio University and continuing her research on ADHD. An Honors College Exploration Scholars Research Grant supported her work.


COMMUNITIES IN HARMONY Teaches music to homeless and underprivileged children in Columbia

USC’s 2014 Student Organization of the Year, Communities in Harmony connects about 30 student volunteers with up to 60 young children every week at two homeless shelters, a school and a park. Started in 2012, CiH is one of several community service initiatives funded by the Bernard and Arline Ramsdale Fellowship. Their daughter, Marie-Louise Ramsdale, ’90 international studies, created the fellowship to enable Honors College students to work in education, housing, health, women’s and children’s issues and intergenerational programming. Playing instruments provided by a grant from the Central Carolina Community Foundation, honors students teach life lessons to disadvantaged children through music. “Our stated purpose is to bring music to kids for one hour, but our true purpose is to give the kids an hour of distraction and fun that doesn’t involve whatever sad or painful things are going on in their lives,” said Michael Owens, vice president of the student group and a biochemistry/molecular biology senior. “In the Midlands, homelessness is such a huge problem that it’s important for USC to be involved. If we’re going to be here, we should help.” A saxophone player who plans to become a pediatrician and medical researcher, Owens is quantifying the program’s results for his senior thesis. But no study is necessary to chart the power of music. “It’s a very primal, pure form of self-expression,” he said. “There’s something visceral about hitting a drum and singing along to a sad song when you’re not in a good mood. Not everybody has to be a musician, but you should know that’s there for you.”

SCHC pharmacy student Rebekah Crandall and a student at St. Lawrence Place in Columbia

Kathryn Sullivan on the roof of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce building in Washington, D.C.

SUMMER SMITH TAYLOR ENDOWED INTERNSHIP FUND Supports internships emphasizing technical writing

Suzette and Tom Smith started this fund in 2011 in memory of their daughter who died that year. Taylor, a ’93 English alumna, was an associate professor of English and director of the Advanced Writing Program at Clemson University. Kathryn Sullivan, a 2012 English graduate, was the fund’s first recipient, and the award allowed her to intern her final semester at Post No Bills, a Columbia public relations firm. Now associate manager of communications at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Global Intellectual Property Center, Sullivan says she’s using skills learned during her internship. “I’m responsible for social media content, taking information that’s complex or technical and turning it into something more accessible,” Sullivan said. “The internship definitely gave me a leg up when I was applying for jobs and trying to figure out what I was going to do.”

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LOOK WHAT WE ACCOMPLISHED TOGETHER! A RUNDOWN OF NUMBERS FROM THE CAROLINA’S PROMISE CAMPAIGN

2,343

donors: 58% alumni, 19% parents, 48% in-state

$24,112,137 total giving, exceeding the original goal by 33%

100%

participation from the Honors College staff during

516%

Percentage of SCHC endowment growth

4

$1M donors contributed gifts of

or more

$23,128,816 96% of the total given to SCHC is for student support

every year of the campaign

Thanks to all of you, we are able to offer more scholarships, send more students abroad, fund more student research and support our students in numerous other ways. It’s no wonder we have more students than ever before (1,747) at the Honors College!

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We hail thee, Big Jim F

or James T. Pearce Sr., one of the best things about going to Carolina was meeting other people from around the state. That was in the early 1940s, when tuition was $100 a semester and the Preston and McKissick buildings were new. “Big Jim” never lost that love for his fellow South Carolinians or its flagship university, and he proved it when he and his wife, Kit, began helping the state’s brightest students stay in-state for college. In 1996, they gave $1 million to start a Carolina Scholar endowment, and since then $1.7 million to the program overall. In doing so, they gave significant scholarships to 42 promising students and will continue to bless future students through these endowed scholarships. Chappell Wilson, Honors College director of development, was able to thank the Greenville businessman personally not long before his death in November. She and Chris Myers, USC’s senior director of development for principal gifts, presented him with the 2015 My Carolina Association’s Distinguished Alumni Award, one of several USC honors he received in his 93 years. “Mr. Pearce said, ‘I don’t think I’ve done anything different than anybody else should do. Everyone should help someone else, period. That’s it. That’s all.’” The scholars he helped are as impressive as their benefactor. They fight terrorism, teach music, treat patients, study diseases, create software for nonprofits. “The gift of an education is one of the most important things you can give to a young person,” wrote Lauren McGinley, ’98 international studies, in a tribute photo album for Pearce. The Carolina scholarship allowed her to attend law school with no previous debt; today she’s vice president and general counsel for a Virginia nonprofit. “It’s not unreasonable to say that my scholarship changed the course of my life,” wrote Denise Strickland, ’03 biology, a speech language pathologist in Columbia. Her experiences at USC and later range from seeing the ocean floor in a submersible to working with the Peace Corps in Nicaragua — and attending graduate school worry-free. “None of this would have been

possible without Mr. Pearce. I could have gotten loans, but the fear of that much debt would have been paralyzing and discouraging.” Several scholars noted Pearce’s generosity extends beyond them. Latin teacher Bethany Matheny Carlson, ’05 English/ Latin, said her three children are “creative, independent learners” thanks to her USC education. Sona Shah Arora, ’01 biology, an academic anesthesiologist in Atlanta, echoed that idea. “Mr. Pearce contributes to every patient I care for and every future physician I teach.” “Your mountain is waiting,” Dr. Seuss promises in “Oh, the Places You’ll Go.” For 42 young South Carolinians, Big Jim Pearce made those mountains easier to climb.

The late Jim and Kit Pearce, center, with Carolina Scholars, from left, Katie Harris, Melody Dawson, Olivia Reburn, Walid Yaghy, Annie Boiter-Jolley and Robert Rolfe

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Uncomfortable

Harshita Jain, recipient of the Elizabeth Albright Belser and Duncan Clinch Heyward Belser Endowed Scholarship, in Orissa, India. She’s the first in her family to study medicine. Photo by Sarina Dodhia

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with Comfort H

arshita Jain can’t shake the memory of two very different women she saw in rural India. One was a 24-yearold who lost two babies before spending 60 percent of the family’s annual income so she could deliver her third safely in a decent hospital. The other was an 85-year-old widow living alone in a tent of tarp and sticks after her home was destroyed by Cyclone Phailin. For Jain, a biology junior who wants to be a physician and work on public health issues, her internship with Alternative for Rural Movement was beyond eye-opening. It solidified her need to help others in a big-picture way. “The more public health and anthropology classes I take, the more I realize health is not an individual thing,” she said. “You can be a doctor and take care of people and send them home, but the problem won’t be solved. How much money is the family making? Are they eating right? Can they even travel to the hospital? I would like to not just be involved in individual health care, but overall health care for a region or community.” In Orissa, a state in eastern India, Jain found herself in a real-world laboratory. Cows roam through villages, people live in shacks, and the roads are so bumpy or narrow only bikes and scooters are used. While cellphones are common, toilets are not; and yearly monsoon floods displace families, their livestock and belongings. The area health center serves 18,000 people with a staff of three — one doctor, one nurse, one pharmacist. It’s not equipped to help expectant mothers with complications. Many die because they arrive too late to be taken to a better hospital. Orissa’s high maternal and infant mortality rate drew Jain. A recipient of the Elizabeth Albright Belser and Duncan Clinch Heyward Belser Endowed Scholarship, she joined USC’s chapter of GlobeMed as a freshman. The student-driven nonprofit partners American universities with nongovernmental organizations around the world; Alternative for Rural Movement in Orissa is

USC’s partner. Founded in 1989, ARM works to improve lives in many ways, developing programs for economic rehabilitation, women’s rights, social justice, better farming practices and child abuse prevention. USC’s GlobeMed chapter has worked with ARM since 2012. In that time, members have raised enough money to provide 14 latrines and eight sewing machines for women to start their own businesses. To research why pregnant women there choose traditional or skilled care, Jain was awarded an Honors College Exploration Scholars Grant. She surveyed women and trained others to continue her work when her internship concluded. The study’s results will be sent to organizations that can help develop a sustainable intervention to help reduce the infant and maternal mortality rate in that area. Jain’s fluency in Hindi was invaluable. Though she grew up in the U.S., graduating from high school in Greenville, her parents are from Delhi. Back at USC, Jain’s work continued. With other GlobeMed members, she contacted U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, speaking to one of his staffers and writing letters requesting help for the people in Orissa. “Whether they listen or not, they are approachable,” she said. “This is a democracy. Believe it or not, my voice as an American college student matters a lot more than the people suffering in India. That’s a powerful thing to realize.” Now in Geneva for her semester abroad, Jain is interning for the Tobacco Free Initiative, part of the World Health Organization. Following medical school and completion of a master’s in public health, she’d like to practice medicine and then move into that big-picture dream. The WHO and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation particularly appeal to her. Until then, she’s uncomfortably aware of her many comforts. Air-conditioning, functioning toilets and transport, and even bug-free food are luxuries many can’t imagine. “Those things are a reality for millions of people everywhere,” she said. “That awareness is always in the back of my head.”

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THE LIBERTY FELLOWS CONNECTION They’re starting free medical clinics and high-tech companies, guiding major corporations and protecting the underserved. And those are just their day jobs. For 11 honors alumni who’ve been awarded prestigious Liberty Fellowships, conscience calls after hours, too. You’ll find them serving on charitable boards and commissions, representing constituents in the general assembly, working to ensure minority voices are heard. They’re all about making South Carolina better. “The goal is to enlist and encourage enlightened leaders of every sort and, by putting them in close and sustained contact with each other, leverage their ability to benefit society as a whole,” explained Benjamin Dunlap, a longtime USC English professor and recently retired president of Wofford College in Spartanburg, where the Liberty Fellowship office is headquartered. Dunlap helped establish the program and moderates many of its seminars. Leadership and collaboration are hallmarks of the fellowship. Fellows are matched with senior advisers working in professions similar to theirs. Fellows also must create and execute their own projects. Thad Westbrook, ’96 political science, Thad Westbrook created a project specifically for the Honors College modeled on the Liberty Fellowship. In his project, students are matched with successful mentors to help guide their futures, just as Liberty Fellows are matched with advisers. “The purpose of my project was to create relationships that would help our students access opportunities in Columbia and hopefully encourage them to stay in South Carolina,” Westbrook explained. “The SCHC brings a lot of talent to our state, and we have to recruit and retain as much of that talent as possible.” Westbrook’s project took root in Dean Steven Lynn’s “Connecting Life and Leadership” course, now taught by Kay Banks, SCHC clinical Kay Banks teaching assistant professor. “Students have had some really Connecting Life and Leadership enlightening experiences because of the mentoring

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aspect of that course,” Lynn said, “getting an up-close view of what it’s like to lead a large police force, a hospital, a major city, a digital company, an academic department, a law firm and more.” Founded in 2004 by Anna Kate and Hayne Hipp of Greenville, the Liberty Fellowship is part of the Aspen Institute’s Global Leadership Network. Twenty fellows between the ages of 30 and 45 are chosen each year, meeting five times within 18 months.

SCHC LIBERTY FELLOWS Cameron Blazer, ’97 interdisciplinary studies (LF 2013); associate attorney, Savage Law Firm; owner, Cottage Industrialist; adjunct professor, Charleston School of Law Laurie Slade Funderburk, ’97 art history, ’01 law (LF 2008); attorney (sole practitioner); S.C. House of Representatives, District 52 Stanfield Gray, ’93 English (LF 2017); founder and CEO, DIG SOUTH Interactive Festival Iris Griffin, ’99 business administration (LF 2016); director of audit services, SCANA Corporation Kevin A. Hall, ’87 international studies (LF 2009); attorney, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP Jenny A. Horne, ’94 English, ’97 law (LF 2011); attorney; S.C. House of Representatives, District 94 Jodie W. McLean, ’90 finance (LF 2009); CEO, Edens Faith L. Polkey, ’93 biology (LF 2010); chief of pediatrics, Beaufort Jasper Hampton Comprehensive Health Services Inc.; regional director of medical education, Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine Ben Rex, ’03 economics (LF 2017); CEO, Cyberwoven Gordon B. Sherard III, ’92 history (LF 2007); obstetrician/ gynecologist, Carolina OB/GYN; secretary of medical staff, Mary Black Memorial Hospital Thad H. Westbrook, ’96 political science, ’99 law (LF 2012); partner, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP


Joseph DuRant and Patrick Scott in the Burns Room at the Thomas Cooper Library

Polishing the Burnsian torch

J

oseph DuRant might be the world’s youngest published author on Scottish poet Robert Burns, but he knows he didn’t achieve that status alone. Guiding him was Patrick Scott, his research adviser. Distinguished professor of English emeritus and editor of Studies in Scottish Literature, Scott directed DuRant’s three-year research project on Burns, which sought to understand whether the poet was an abolitionist and involved editing 500 letters written to Burns from 1779 until his death in 1796. Ask DuRant or Scott anything about Burns, and chances are between them they’ll know. DuRant, ’15 English, is now pursuing a Master of Philosophy in Scottish literature at the University of Glasgow, where he was awarded the prestigious Susan and Frank Shaw Scholarship in Robert Burns Studies and the Andrew Tannahill Bursary. Celebrating his accomplishments is Susan Alexander, SCHC director of Undergraduate Research and Service Learning. Besides making sure he got an Honors College Exploration Scholars Research Grant and a Scholarly Research Travel Grant to attend the 2014 World Congress for Scottish Literatures in Glasgow, she connected him to Scott. “He’s been a wonderful mentor to Joseph,” Alexander said. “He understands the importance of how our research funds

support students, and he places them in a position to excel in the future.” Not that DuRant didn’t excel in the past. At USC, DuRant was a Lieber Scholar, Palmetto Fellow and recipient of the 2013 University Libraries Award for Undergraduate Research. He also received the 2014 Elise Davenroy Award for Excellence in an Undergraduate English Major and the 2015 Merrill G. Christopherson Award for Excellence in a Senior English Major. Hours spent examining documents and making sense of them paid off by leading him to a subject for his senior thesis and his planned future as an English professor of British Romanticism and Robert Burns. Next fall, one chapter from DuRant’s thesis will be published in the Burns Chronicle. He’s already co-author of two Burnsrelated articles and single author of a book review on “Scotland and the Caribbean,” by Michael Morris. To Scott, DuRant represents “a new generation” of academics interested in Burns, whose star has faded in literary circles. The Scottish independence movement is bringing him back. DuRant plans to do his part in that effort. “Burns is a fascinating figure and a pleasure to study,” he said. “Scottish literature deserves more recognition as a distinct entity within British literature. I want my scholarship to reflect that.”

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A gift of any size can make a difference HERE’S HOW ...

Honors College Dean’s Circle

$30 supports the binding of two senior theses $50 covers senior thesis supplies such as petri dishes, sheet music or a digital voice recorder $75 provides transportation for community activities in service learning courses $135 helps a student obtain a passport for study-abroad courses or research $200 funds an away game football watching party in the Honors Residence $500 supports one career development workshop for Honors College students $750 covers one month of materials for the student computer lab $1,200 creates a student stipend for a 120-hour faculty-mentored research project

Honors College Dean’s Circle members have each given more than $1,000 this year. Donors who contribute $1,801-plus

$1,500 supports a student working in an unpaid internship for a semester $1,750 supports a luncheon for prospective internship providers

annually are granted membership in the

$2,000 supports a student participating in the S.C. Government Internship Program

President’s Society. Donors who give at

$2,250 sponsors the Alumni Homecoming Champagne Brunch

any level for three or more consecutive

$2,500 supports a student participating in the Washington Semester Internship

years are members of the Carolina Circle.

Program

For more information on these and other Giving Societies, visit giving.sc.edu/ givingsocieties and schc.sc.edu/ support/deans-circle.

$5,000 funds an honoraria to bring a nationally known speaker to the Honors Residence $8,000 sponsors May Revocation $15,000 furnishes a teaching computer lab in the Honors Residence $25,000 creates a named endowed scholarship in the Honors College $50,000 endows a named study abroad scholarship $100,000 endows a named merit or need-based scholarship $300,000 creates a named Carolina Scholar scholarship endowment

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2015 ALUMNI HONOREES MAKING THEIR MARK IN BOSTON AND RIO DE JANEIRO

The SCHC’s 2015 alumni award winners have gone a long way literally and figuratively.

JIMMY STORY, ’93

ASMA SAMIR JABER, ’08

James “Jimmy” Story, ’93 interdisciplinary studies, grew up in Moncks Corner, S.C. A career Foreign Service officer, Story is consul general at the U.S. Consulate General in Rio de Janeiro, where his role is to build good will between the U.S. and Brazil and to bring about economic and cultural collaboration. Asma Samir Jaber, ’08 anthropology/international studies, grew up in Travelers Rest, S.C., and honors her Palestinian heritage through her work at Harvard University. Both were honored at the homecoming reception in October. “I appreciate all the Honors College has done for me,” Story told the crowd via Skype from his home in Brazil. “My family didn’t go to college. What I learned more than anything else is that anything is possible. Everybody has the power to do whatever they want in life.” Story, who speaks Portuguese and Spanish and earned a master’s in foreign service from Georgetown University, has worked for the U.S. State Department since 1998, serving in various capacities around the world. He is the recipient of the Department of Army’s Superior Civilian Service Award and the U.S. State Department’s Warren Christopher Award for Outstanding Achievement in Global Affairs. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Honors Alumni Award. Jaber manages a leadership development program for graduate students from the Arab world at Harvard’s Kennedy School Center for Public Leadership. Previously she worked with the U.S. Department of Justice and the United Nations. Jaber and her husband founded PIVOT, a mobile startup that allows users to see what a place looked like in the past using augmented and virtual reality. Winner of a grand prize in a Harvard-wide competition, PIVOT’s mission is to streamline access to historical places, especially for those at risk of being lost or destroyed. She is recipient of the Distinguished Young Alumni Award. “So much of what I’ve experienced has foundations here at USC,” Jaber said, describing the discomfort she felt growing up as both an American and a Palestinian. “Not feeling at home allowed me to feel the warmth of the Honors College at USC.” “Jimmy and Asma are leaders and innovators on the world stage,” said Beth Hutchison, SCHC’s director of Alumni Engagement. “They represent the best of what our college offers.”

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Alumni News 1970 Martha Anne Boseski, ’75, recently retired after a 35-year teaching career and lives in Columbia. When she isn’t traveling to Ireland, Poland, Canada and beyond, she tutors part time at Sylvan Learning Center. Dr. Roxzanne (Beason) Breland, ’75, was recently elected to chair the board of the S.C. Vocational Rehabilitation Department, on which she has served since 2002. She also serves with the S.C. Chiropractic Association and other professional organizations. Anne (Southerland) Ellefson, ’76, was installed as president of the Board of Governors for the S.C. Bar. She lives in Greenville, where she is deputy general counsel for Greenville Health System.

1980 Jeffrey Vinzani, ’83, was appointed to the S.C. State University Board of Trustees. An attorney in Charleston, he also serves on the Partnership Board for the South Carolina Honors College.

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1990 Amy (Haskins) Sikes, ’91, works in university advancement for the College of William & Mary, where she is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Education. She volunteers as development director for Diabetic Cats in Need in Williamsburg, Va. Catherine (Edwards) Heigel, ’92, was recently appointed director of the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control. Heigel also serves on the Partnership Board for the South Carolina Honors College. The Honorable Jenny (Anderson) Horne, ’94, a representative (R-Summerville) in the S.C. House of Representatives, was named a 2015 Rodel Fellow at the Aspen Institute, which brings together rising stars of American political life. Laura Kelley, ’95, is a doctor of veterinary medicine at Southeast Veterinary Dermatology in Charlotte. Lauren (Griswold) McGinley, ’98, is vice president, general counsel and chief

ethics and compliance officer at Noblis Inc., where she also serves as corporate secretary. Previously she was deputy general counsel. Noblis is a nonprofit science, technology and strategy organization in Washington, D.C. Liam Charles Palmer, ’99, is a research assistant professor of chemistry at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. Jennifer (Berry) Campbell, ’99, is director of children and family ministry at Central United Methodist Church in Asheboro, N.C.

2000

S.C. Super Lawyers magazine. He and his wife, Susannah, have five children.

Patrick Kelly, ’03, was named a U.S. Department of Education 2015-16 Classroom Teaching Ambassador Fellow. Kelly teaches AP U.S. Government and coaches the boys’ cross-country team at Blythewood High School.

Brannon Jones Arnold, ’05, is an attorney at Weinberg, Wheeler, Hudgins, Gunn and Dial LLC in Atlanta. Mike Lee, ’05, is a librarian at the Thomas Cooper Library on the University of South Carolina Columbia campus.

Bryan McElveen, ’03, is a real estate agent with Dunes Properties of Charleston.

Kathryn de Luna, ’01, is an assistant professor of precolonial African history at Georgetown University. Matt Gerrald, ’03, is a partner in the Columbia law firm of Barnes, Alford, Stork and Johnson LLP. He received an AV Preeminent® peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell and has twice been selected to the Rising Stars list published by

for a master’s of American history and government. She teaches at Powdersville High School in Greenville.

Leslie Kouvolo Martin, ’04, was named a James Madison Fellow representing South Carolina for 2015 and is using the fellowship to attend Ashland University in Ohio

Patrick Wooten, ’05, was installed as president of the S.C. Bar’s Young Lawyers Division in 2015. He is the youngest member of the S.C. Bar Board of Governors and the youngest recipient of the Leadership in Law award. He practices with Nelson Mullins Riley and Scarborough in Charleston.


Aaron Flaaen, ’06, won the World Trade Organization 2015 Essay Award for Young Economists. He and his two co-authors were awarded the prize at the annual meeting of the European Trade Study Group in Paris. Their paper was titled “Input Linkages and the Transmission of Shocks: Firm-Level Evidence from the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake.” He received a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and is an economist for the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington, D.C. Meghan (Hughes) Hickman ’07, is executive director at EngenuitySC, which works to enhance economic competitiveness in the Midlands of South Carolina. In 2015 she was named to the board of directors of the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce. Shelly (Fleming) Wilkinson, ’07, teaches math at Hillsboro High School in Nashville, Tenn.

Beth Ann Bell, ’08, led a team of UCLA geologists in discovering that life on earth began 4.1 billion years ago, instead of the earlier-believed 3.8 billion years ago. Bell received her doctoral degree at UCLA and is first author of a paper about their findings published in October in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Sharika Richardson, ’08, is an attorney and program director at Legal Services of Southern Piedmont in Charlotte. She graduated from Duke University School of Law in 2011.

Georgia Berbert, ’11, is working on her occupational therapy master’s at MUSC in Charleston. Previously, she was an admissions counselor for high achieving students at USC’s Columbia campus. Sneha Minisandram, ’12, is a global trade software analyst at Integration Point Inc., a global trade management company in Charlotte. She interned and later worked for the S.C. Department of Commerce in business and industry development. Abena Amparbeng, ’13, is working at Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine as a speech and culture teacher for the study abroad program, partnered with Australian universities.

Reginald Hair, ’13, is in his third year of law school at the University of South Carolina School of Law. Ashlynn Wittchow, ’13, teaches at Hand Middle School in Columbia and was selected to take courses in the graduate program at the Oxford University campus of the Bread Loaf School of English. She was part of an intensive professional development program centered on British and world literature. Chris Scudder, ’14, is using his political science and art history degrees at his new job in development at the Columbia Museum of Art.

2010 Scott Lettrich, ’10, obtained his professional engineer license in S.C. and recently entered the professional M.B.A. program at USC’s Darla Moore School of Business. He is an engineer at Southern Nuclear Operating Company. Nyssa (Fox) Farrell, ’10, is a resident physician at the University of Colorado Hospital in Denver. She was married in October.

Quentin Williams, ’14, is working for Boeing as a financial analyst in the company’s leadership development program. He lives in Seattle. Hazel Bridges, ’15, started her first year at the University of South Carolina School of Law. Kara Gay, ’15, is a clinical research coordinator at Coastal Pediatric Associates in Charleston. Alexi McHugh, ’15, is pursuing a master’s degree in public health concentrating on health promotion at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Drasti Patel, ’15, is pursuing a graduate degree from North Carolina State University. Jack Tisdall, ’15, is a sourcing specialist in purchasing, inventory and materials management for Bell Helicopter in Johnson City, Tenn.

Ashlynn Wittchow

We would like to include you in the Alumni News section. Please send us your news or update your contact information at schc.sc.edu. Search Keep In Touch. Also, connect with other Honors College alumni with LinkedIn by joining the group, South Carolina Honors College Alumni. A direct link is on our alumni website.

U NI V E RS I T Y O F S O U T H C A R O LIN A

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We make South Carolina stronger. When torrential flooding hit the Palmetto State, Cory Alpert put out a call for volunteers among USC students, then coordinated the massive response that followed — more than 5,000 volunteer hours in the first week alone. Responding to community needs is what USC students do.

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CORY ALPERT SOCIOLOGY, HONORS COLLEGE, CLASS OF ’17 USC COLUMBIA

AHA! Winter 2016  
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