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TURNS10! Fall 2005

AHA! Contents


AHA! Turns 10




You are holding the 10th anniversary issue of AHA!, the magazine of the Association of Honors Alumni.

Davis Baird takes the helm; new dean to emphasize research and innovation

Honors Alumni Profiles


10 Years


Carissa Hansford

AHA! Introduces Honors Alumni Profiles, an online career networking tool

Aaron and Candice Hark tie the knot. See who else got hitched (or promoted, or relocated, or honored) in “Class Notes”

Launched in winter 1995 with the headline “An organization whose time has come,” AHA! is the outcome of retired dean Peter Sederberg’s declaration that “the time has come to organize the alumni of honors education at the University.” The goal: “To cultivate the potential of honors alumni, who represent an array of careers and a rich variety of experiences.”

That first issue focused on the founding of the AHA organization. It had a “Class Notes” section with six alumni reporting. Over the years, we’ve kept you up to date on college news: a changing staff and a growing student body, the annual winners of the Outstanding Honors Faculty award and the Distinguished Honors Alumni award, and the interesting and illuminating activities of honors students and alumni. And yes, we have even occasionally asked for—and gratefully received—your financial support. Over the years, the AHA! newsletter has evolved and matured. Circulation has increased from 1,800 to more than 5,000. Each issue features between 50 and 70 class notes. Articles cover topics ranging from suicide prevention to the challenge of balancing career and family. Full color is now on every page, and a volunteer staff of several alumni writers keeps the ball rolling. But the main focus of AHA! is the same: to keep you informed about the South Carolina Honors College. Thanks for reading!

TURNS10! Spring 2005

—Carissa Hansford, managing editor

Stay connected —join the AHA listserv AHA! is the official newsletter of the Association of Honors Alumni and is published twice yearly for alumni of the South Carolina Honors College by the South Carolina Honors College.

Did you know that more than 500 honors alumni are already in the loop? They are subscribed to the AHA listserv, used to make e-mail announcements between newsletters.

Managing Editor: Carissa Hansford

To subscribe, send an e-mail with the subject line “listserv” to

Copy Editor: Susan Nesbitt Ward (1990)

Please be sure to add the e-mail address to your contacts list. We’re not junk but your e-mail program might not know it!

To reach us: 803-777-8102 or Alumni Correspondents: Rachel Moyle Beanland (2003), Michele Marple Thomas (1992), Susan Nesbitt Ward (1990)

05516 University Publications 11/05

Incoming dean to emphasize research, innovation Davis Baird, philosophy professor and former chair of the philosophy department, was named the new Honors College dean after a series of interviews and open forums hosted by the Honors College dean search committee. Although not new to the University, Baird will face numerous new challenges in this role and is filled with ideas and energy for his new position. Hired in 1982 to develop a Philosophy 111 course, Baird has gone on to create and expand many other programs at the University, including the NanoScience and Technology Studies group in the USC NanoCenter. He works in what he describes as an “underpopulated niche,” where philosophy meets nanotechnology—technology engineered at the molecular level of matter. A strong supporter of research-based learning (RBL), a program that integrates research into the honors curriculum, Baird is also part of the ongoing nanotech project that matches up 10 undergraduate NanoScholars with some 20 faculty members for specific research projects on the societal and ethical interactions of nanotechnology. Baird will continue his interests in nanotechnology and plans to work with an Honors College NanoScholar this fall. Baird’s interest in RBL and the Fundamentals of Inquiry courses spurred his involvement with the college, where he has taught since the early 1980s. Developing RBL courses is just one goal Baird hopes to accomplish as dean. When applying for the position, Baird described his association with the college as “some of the most gratifying work I have done here at the University.” He said his desire to increase the penetration of RBL will become a focus of the Dear SCHC Alumni,

Honors College under his guidance. He also plans to further develop the educational innovation present in the Honors College.

ate experience than anyone else on campus. The dean is tied to every piece—housing, the administration, every academic department, and many extracurricular activities,” Baird said.

“The Honors College has served and will continue to serve as the primary incubator for instructional innovation,” Baird said. He wants the Honors College to continue to be a place where faculty can try new courses or new ways of teaching. “The Honors College needs to lead the University in developing these educational opportunities,” said Baird, who likes the idea of developing an educational innovation think tank for future changes and improvements.

In his time away from the University, Baird is an avid reader and movie lover. He has a voracious appetite for stories (some better than others, he says) and loves to observe nature. He owns a house in the North Carolina mountains, where he likes to hike. He said his wife, Deanna Leamon, an art department faculty member, also has instilled in him an appreciation for art.

Baird received his undergraduate degree in 1976 from Brandeis UniBaird enjoys a hike at Mt. Mitchell, N.C. versity, where he majored in mathematics and philosophy. Baird said that when he was an Along with new ideas, Baird also brings to the job an undergraduate, students did not receive as much assistance awareness of the challenges awaiting him. “There is a large when they started college as they do today. “There wasn’t interest from the Board of Trustees and the University an orientation … and there was no continuity with adviseadministration in growing the college … already at our ment,” he said. “The University pays more attention to the current size, we’re bulging.” Along with a larger incoming transition from high school to college … and has a clearly freshman class, the Honors College faces obstacles such as functional, real attempt to provide helpful advice to make insufficient building space and less individualized attention the best use of the undergraduate experience.” Baird also has for students. Baird said that any growth in the size of the advanced degrees from Stanford University. college needs to be matched with growth in space—as well Baird said he looks forward most to working full time with as support staff and educational opportunities. “The locathe honors community. “One of the most exciting things tion of the Honors College is ideal, but the nature and the about being dean of the Honors College is being able to amount of square footage are not,” Baird said. work with the most passionate and committed faculty and As dean, Baird said he will have more contact with stustudents at the University,” Baird said. “When you put dents than ever before when he adds advising to his job great faculty and great students together, it’s amazing.” duties. He will handle the administrative matters for the —Nicole Modeen (international studies 2006) college, and he plans to continue teaching. “The Honors College dean … knows more about the undergradu-

develop my connection with you. I would love to hear from you—what was great and what wasn’t—and where you’ve gone since leaving the Honors College. For those of you who are willing or interested, I would love to be able to connect you with current honors students whose interests might draw them to your work.

I also have been very pleased to see strong support from you, the college’s alumni. I have received many letters, e-mails— and donations—to the college attesting to your support of our work. Indeed in my first month on the job I’ve already met with two families of Honors College alumni that are keen for their children to attend the college. I can think of no better testament to the college than our alumni trusting us with the education of their sons and daughters. Thank you.

so successful in its mission to provide an enhanced education for intellectually gifted and motivated students that there is considerable pressure to grow the college, and I was hired with a mandate to find ways to grow the college while maintaining the quality of its offerings and retaining the personal approach it takes to Honors College students. This will place many demands on the college. We will need more staff to work with our students and more space. We will need more support from all the units on campus that provide the courses and faculty that connect with our students. And most important, we must keep our educational efforts fresh. I am working on a scheme to create an Honors College Fellows Program that would allow a small number of faculty on campus to have a year in the college developing new and interesting ways to involve our students in their education. This idea was inspired by some of the work of Honors College associate dean Doug Williams. Dr. Doug has been involving honors students in his research on the polar regions and in creating museum exhibits that engage children in polar science at Columbia’s EdVenture Children’s Museum. Doug calls this “Learning through Experimental Outreach,” and it is one great new way to get students connected both to research and to bringing this research to our broader community.

No institution thrives by resting on its accomplishments, and the Honors College is no exception. The college has been

One final thought. As I work my way into this new and exciting job of dean of the Honors College, I want to

Davis Baird August 2005

I’ve just finished my first month as the college’s new dean and I’m happy to share with you some of my initial impressions. I clearly am inheriting a very healthy college from my predecessor, Peter Sederberg. We have just admitted the largest freshman class in our history and the best academically prepared class. As I have spent time talking to faculty and department heads across the campus I find extremely strong support for the college. I am also very pleased with the strong support that USC’s upper administration and Board of Trustees have shown the college. We are leading educational innovation at USC. Our efforts to draw undergraduates into the research life of the University, and our efforts to provide opportunities that combine experiences abroad with honors education, have been recognized and supported.

Carissa Hansford, the college’s director of alumni affairs, has been working with Vicki Hamby from the University’s Career Center to develop a database of career profiles of college alumni. The idea is to create a way for you find each other—either for personal reasons or for professional reasons—and for you to be able to connect with our current students. The college is old enough now that we have alumni working in leadership positions in most sectors of society. You are a great resource for each other and for our students. We hope to help you make use of this resource—yourselves. These are only my initial thoughts and reflections. I hope to hear from many of you and to see you at the college.



Compassionate yet professional

Dichotomy serves Poteat in humanitarian aid career

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, honors alumna Linda Poteat (1988) found herself in familiar territory, but a lot closer to home. After more than a decade of working in international humanitarian aid, Poteat has a lot of experience providing relief in situations that are tense, desperate, and dangerous. Usually, though, they’ve been oceans away from her alma mater and extended family in South Carolina. “You have to be able to balance the compassion for your beneficiaries with a professional attitude,” Poteat said. “You can’t let your emotions take over during a crisis, or else you may not be able to provide the best services to the folks who need them. Plus folks don’t want pity and tears—they want competent assistance that allows them to retain their dignity.” Poteat is senior program manager for disaster response with InterAction, an alliance of U.S.-based international development and humanitarian nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). She’s been in the position for a year, during which her department has responded to crises from the escalating violence in Darfur in Western Sudan, to the tsunami in South Asia, to Hurricane Katrina, which devastated the Gulf Coast.


Before that, she spent years working with the International Rescue Committee, one of InterAction’s member organizations, in places such as Croatia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo, and Sierra Leone. Born in Santa Barbara, Calif., and raised mostly in New Jersey, Poteat spent summers in South Carolina, where her parents are from and where her extended family lives. “My dad went to USC (BS, electrical engineering, 1959) and I grew up with a Gamecock on the wall,” she said. The idea of a small college within a large University drew her to the Honors College. She chose the Baccalaureus Artium et Scientiae degree because of the requirements for both arts and sciences, and, “I wanted to keep my options open. “I focused on Soviet studies within the B.Ar.Sc. program because I was fascinated with the Russian language and culture,” Poteat said. “Having been raised in a Cold War household—my dad built missile tracking systems—it struck me that we weren’t supposed to like the Soviets but I had never actually met one, so I wasn’t sure why they were supposed to be so bad.” Poteat had begun studying French in seventh grade and had learned a lot about the French people through the language, she said. “I figured I could do the same thing with Russian. Then I discovered Russian art, literature, and poetry—I was hooked.” And so while in SCHC, she continued her studies in French and also added the Italian language to the mix, much to the dismay of then dean Bill Mould. “He was worried that I was using my class time as a ‘Berlitz school’ rather than focusing on other classes,” she con-

fessed. “I’ve always wanted to let him know that it all worked out fine in the end. I used my Russian in Russia of course, my Italian came in very handy in Albania where few Albanians spoke English but nearly all spoke Italian, and my French was indispensable in the two Congos.” She’s also conversant in Serbo-Croatian and speaks basic Swahili. “I started Arabic last year,” Poteat said, “but don’t have much free time to develop it.” She believes it’s useful for someone pursuing a career in international humanitarian aid to be multilingual. “You can be much more effective if you are able to speak to your local colleagues and especially your beneficiaries in the language they are most comfortable with,” she said. “Plus you learn a lot more about the place where you are working. “It’s also much easier to get your first job if you speak a second language fluently,” she continued. “That’s how I got my first job in Russia (as administration and finance officer with American International Health Alliance). I didn’t really have much of an administration and finance background, but I could speak to the staff, which was more important. “I always encourage folks interested in getting into humanitarian assistance to learn French,” she said, “as it is very difficult for us to find French-speaking staff to send to Francophone Africa. There is a lot less competition for jobs, so applicants have a much better chance of getting posted out there.” Poteat said she had always been interested in voluntarism and service, but hadn’t realized when she was younger that it could be a profession. “I learned about Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) when doing a paper on the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, but didn’t really pursue that line of thinking at the time,” she said. “We didn’t really learn much about nongovernmental organizations in school and their role in relief and development, but they are an important part of every society and do have a significant impact in many developing nations.” Being involved in making that impact is something Poteat finds fulfilling. “I think the most satisfying aspect of the work is knowing that your beneficiaries’ quality of life or health status has improved as a result of the work that you have done,” she said. “For example, in the Katana Health Zone of South Kivu in D.R. Congo, the mortality rate was cut in half after two years of our primary health care support program—provision of essential drugs, training of staff, reinforcement of routine immunizations. There were a number of factors involved, but our program was largely responsible for the reduction in mortality,” Poteat said. “It’s a nice feeling knowing that fewer children are dying from preventable diseases and that more mothers are having safer pregnancies than before your program started, especially when you are building sustainable development components into your emergency programs: supporting the local ministry of health through training, provision of equipment, etc.” Of course, the field has its share of disappointments as well, Poteat said. “The most frustrating aspect of the work is seeing progress that you contributed to being erased by renewed violence or by bad policy from the donors (such as) defunding successful programs because of changing priorities,” she said. “Another big frustration is the lack of

a consistent foreign policy toward certain countries from our government and others. This prevents political solutions to the root causes of many of the conflicts which cause the problems that we are working to address. “This is a very exciting field to be in, if you enjoy working and living in ‘interesting’ places and handling lots of different challenges all at once,” Poteat said. “There is also a great deal of job satisfaction when your programs are successful and your beneficiaries are able to regain their self-reliance.” Poteat said she hopes with the participation of InterAction’s member agencies, Americans hit by Hurricane Katrina will begin to regain some of what they have lost. Seeing tens of thousands of Americans as refugees in a crisis has been a “weird situation” for Poteat and a lot of her colleagues, she said. “It’s interesting for us to see how local and federal officials are dealing with it, and hopefully as NGOs are brought into it, the situation will improve. “We aren’t normally involved in domestic aid,” Poteat said, “but after a few days it became obvious that our agencies had more expertise in the kinds of problems they were experiencing than the agencies who were trying to handle it. “What they had there in the Superdome was really a refugee camp. Our NGOs have standards (when they set up camps), for example, one latrine for every 20 people. And I’m sure there weren’t that many toilets in the Superdome. “You wouldn’t think,” she said, “that Americans in the Superdome would be living in worse conditions than Sudanese refugees in Chad.” For more information, visit —Susan Nesbitt Ward, 1990 When sudden disaster strikes somewhere in the world, Americans moved by compassion often want to help. We want to send blankets, food, and other “comforts of home” to those in need. We may think of cash as impersonal or cold. But InterAction explains why cash is best. • Cash allows disaster relief professionals to procure exactly what is needed in a disaster situation. • Cash is the most efficient donation because it does not use up scarce resources such as transportation routes, staff time, and warehouse space and because it can be transferred very quickly. • Cash donations do not require transportation costs, which can outweigh the value of materials donated. • Cash supports the economy of the disasterstricken region. • Cash donations prevent culturally, dietary, and environmentally inappropriate giving. From the InterAction Web site’s “Guide to Appropriate Giving.” A more detailed explanation of these points can be found at www. InterAction’s Web site also includes lists of its member nongovernmental organizations that are responding to particular disasters and emergency situations around the world, a section on how to select a charity for your donation, and other information useful to those who would like to support the NGOs’ efforts.


Honors Alumni Profiles

AHA, Career Center to kick off Honors Alumni Profiles Success depends upon alumni participation Ever wonder where Honors College graduates are going, or where they’ve been? With Honors Alumni Profiles the Association of Honors Alumni and the USC Career Center hope to make it easy to find out. HAP is a new online resource for career exploration, networking, and career and graduate school advice. The searchable database will be composed of “a day in the life of … ” career profiles of Honors College alumni. It is intended for use by both Honors College alumni and current honors students.

Please visit career/honors/hap.html The concept for HAP was developed by Vicki Hamby, Career Center liaison to the Honors College, with assistance from Carissa Hansford, SCHC director of alumni affairs. “Honors students frequently ask me where honors alumni are working, or attending graduate school, and if I can put them in touch with an alumni contact,” said Hamby. “We wanted to design an easy way to provide a connection between current and alumni honors students.” There are two primary uses of HAP: career exploration and networking. For users who are still exploring career options, the profiles will offer a way to identify potential career paths— and employers—they haven’t previously considered. For example, a student who searches under the majors of “English” or “journalism” might be surprised to learn

Does your company need more Gamecock blood? In August, the staff of the USC Career Center boarded a van to Charleston, S.C., for a site visit to Blackbaud, Inc., world leader in software and services for nonprofit organizations and frequent recruiter at USC. While there, Career Center staff had Vicki Hamby, the opportunity to speak with Career Center liaison a panel of six among the USC to the Honors College alumni working for Blackbaud, including SCHC alumna Amy Adams (1991). [The company also employs Honors College graduates Anne Gill McDonell (1991) and Jim Ballou (1990).]


What is HAP? HAP is a searchable online database containing career profiles of honors alumni who have volunteered to provide helpful career advice and information to AHA members and SCHC students. HAP is not a job placement service or job board, but it is a great way to learn about careers and to make connections with SCHC alumni. How do I participate? Simply visit and enter the keycode hap123 to create your profile. Remember, create your profile by Jan. 1 to participate in the drawing for free merchandise. Is my information safe? Only e-mail addresses will be displayed to users. what types of occupations Honors alumni with English and journalism degrees have gone on to pursue.

the life …” description of their jobs, and also give advice and suggestions for students seeking to break into the field.

On the other end of the spectrum are students who know exactly what they are looking for but need a little help in getting a foot in the door.

Success of the project hinges entirely upon participation of Honors College alumni. Hamby and Hansford are waging a campaign to fill the database with 100 profiles by Jan. 1, 2006.

“Let’s say that a graduating senior or an alum wants to work in marketing or health care,” Hamby said. “A simple search of either of these categories could provide that individual with a list of potential employers in that field, not to mention an alumni contact from whom they can gain valuable advice.”

“It will take but a few minutes to complete your profile online,” said Hansford. “There’s really no easier way to give back to the Honors College.

The advice section of HAP is a reflection of the strong sense of community among Honors College affiliates. Here alumni can provide users with a detailed “a day in

This nice-size panel included grads who majored in English, interdisciplinary studies, business, computer science, political science, and human resources. But we were surprised when one USC alum quipped, “We have too much orange blood around here.” “I agree,” piped up another. “USC needs to send more Gamecocks our way!” So that got us thinking … “What color does the blood run where you work?” And, if you had the choice, wouldn’t you like the opportunity to work with more fellow graduates of USC (and the Honors College) at your place of employment? Well, the Career Center would like to help you with that mission! All it requires is that you take a moment to make sure your employer is using all the available recruiting resources at USC.

We need you! And you need free Honors College stuff. Help us reach our goal of 100 Honors Alumni Profiles by Jan. 1. Complete your career profile today! All profiles submitted by Jan. 1 will be entered into a drawing for free Honors College merchandise.

For example, your employer can:

• post positions in the USC CareerLink database (full-time, part-time, and internships) • search for student resumes in the USC CareerLink database • schedule an information session or display table for USC students • conduct interviews with students on campus • attend USC job fairs • arrange for a Career Center staff site visit. For more information on employer services at the USC Career Center see and click on “Employers.” —Vicki Hamby, USC Career Center



10 Years


his kids’ colleges cost a whole lot more than SCHC for the same quality instruction. “Of course,” he says, “the scenery is different, and the climate is very different.”

James Kennedy Hartsfield (1977) was certified by the American Board of Orthodontics this year, and became a fellow in the College of Diplomates John Dennis of the American James Hartsfield Culbertson (1969) Board of Orthoretired from Aiken dontics. This complemented his interest County Public in genetics and dentistry, especially orthoSchools on June dontics. He is also certified by the Amer30, 2004. Last year ican Board of Medical Genetics, and is a he was a part-time founding fellow in the American College counselor at W.E. of Medical Genetics. He was inducted as Parker Elementary a fellow in the International College of John D. Culbertson School in Edgefield, Dentists on Oct. 7, 2005. Last year he was S.C., and taught psychology part-time for inducted as a fellow in the American Piedmont Technical College at the Edgefield, College of Dentists. He is professor of McCormick, and Saluda campuses. In orthodontics and director and professor of February 2005, he was recognized for more oral facial genetics at the Indiana Univerthan 25 years of service to the counseling sity School of Dentistry and is a professor profession at the S.C. Counseling Association of medical and molecular genetics at the annual convention in Myrtle Beach. He is Indiana University School of Medicine. now teaching for Piedmont Technical College He is scheduled to be a keynote speaker at at the Edgefield and Saluda campuses. the 8th International Conference on logical Mechanisms of Tooth Eruption, Resorption, and Movement, in Phuket, Thailand, in November. Although he had surgery for kidney cancer three years George Cauthen (1970) just completed a ago, he is now doing fine. He has been project for USAID, assisting the Republic married to Karen (Whitaker) Hartsof Armenia in revising its bankruptcy field (SCHC 1977) for 28 years. Karen laws. Cauthen spent 10 days this summer is the business manager of their private in Armenia, working with people from orthodontics practice, and is also a busithe courts and the Ministry of Justice, and ness management elder in their church. with attorneys. He reports that Armenia’s In October, the Hartsfields went on an bankruptcy law has many interesting facets, annual weeklong dental care mission trip some of which could be useful in bankruptcy to Reynosa, Mexico, where they set up a practice in the United States. temporary clinic and see as many patients as they can. Their son, Kennedy Hartsfield, is in the civil engineering program Marshall Winn (1974) is a partner in the at Purdue University. law firm of Wyche, Burgess, Freeman, & Par- ham PA in Greenville, S.C. He sings with the Greenville Chorale, which celebrated its 40th Felicia anniversary with a special performance in Mitchell (1977) October. He and wife Jeannette have two is an English prochildren: daughter Eleanor is a freshman at fessor and chair of Wesleyan University, and son Richard was the English departnamed to the Second Honor List at Dartment at Emory & mouth College at the end of his junior year, Henry College. In which puts him in line to graduate magna addition to writcum laude in spring 2006. Proud dad says, ing poetry and Felicia Mitchell “He was one of the infamous orientation the occasional trip leaders this year for incoming freshscholarly piece, she enjoys her avocation men—three days on the trail in the mountains as weekly columnist for the Washington of Vermont—and will be a freshman writCounty News based in Abingdon, Va. ing instructor this year.” Winn complains that

AHA! Spotlight






Emily Henderson

After graduating from USC with a major in studio art and a concentration in graphic design, Emily Henderson (2002) headed north in search of fulltime graphic design work. She relocated to New Haven, Conn., attracted by its inviting mix of city and town as well as its proximity to New York City. Emily worked as a graphic design freelancer before landing a job with Heavybag Media, an interactive communications firm. Emily recently was promoted to art director after acting as Heavybag’s lead designer.

Heavybag Media strives to create forms of communication that encourage the viewer to act as well as think. The company uses a variety of media including print, Web, film, and video to craft “immersive messaging.” Heavybag’s clients include Yale University, eHarmony, Boehringer Ingelheim, Robotube Games, and NFW Watches. As art director, Emily’s responsibilities include developing design concepts, supervising production workers to meet project goals, and communicating with vendors and clients to deliver the final product. Outside of her work with Heavybag, Emily is busy cultivating Hoedown, her independent Screenshots from a Web site credesign collective. She uses Hoedown as a vehicle ated by Hoedown, Henderson’s independent design collective. to kindle experimental, collaborative projects. Hoedown designed the site for Through Hoedown, Emily is also able to incorfashion company Freight Train clothing (www.freighttrain porate interests and influences such as graphic novels, rock music, design books, analog guitar effects, Victoriana, and anatomical imagery. Emily hopes to further develop Hoedown as an experimental and interdisciplinary design firm that merges elements of graphic design, retail, and fine art. While she enjoys New Haven and the Northeast, Emily desperately misses her role as lead guitarist for Columbia indie rock band Winged DNA and the Lesser Light, and she longs to return to the South’s “greasy cuisine, long driveways, colorful dives and low clouds.” “Ultimately,” she says, “ I want to move back to the Southeast in order to contribute to culture and commerce there.” —Marshall James Brian Adler (1978) served as acting dean of the graduate school at Valdosta State University in 2004–2005, and is now dean. He says, “I saw Susan Brian Adler in a selfdescribed “picture of Cate’s (1978) picdeanish angst” ture from last year’s homecoming reunion, and I have to say, ‘you look the same!’” Brian also says he wishes he could have joined AHA at the homecoming brunch this year.

Susan Cate (1978) is the director of the office of research for USC’s Arnold School of Public Health. She would like to pass along the message to Brian Adler (1978) that he should make room in his busy dean’s schedule at Valdosta and join his old Honors College friends at Capstone next year, if not this one! Senator Brad Hutto (1978) was re-elected to serve a third term in the S.C. Senate in November 2004. He represents Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, and Orangeburg counties. He taught an honors class on lawmaking and state government during the spring semester of 2005. “It was a wonderful and

challenging experience and a great chance to interact with the bright students attending the Honors College,” he says. Sally Wilson Smith (1979) is a psychiatrist in private practice in Charleston, S.C. Her daughter Savi, 17, is a freshman at USC. Carl Bernard Strange (1979, MA 1985) recently finished a three-year term as senior warden at St. James Episcopal Parish in Farmington, Conn. He and wife Eileen relocated to Southbury, Conn., with daughters Heather and Lidian. Strange began his teaching career at Newberry (S.C.) High in 1980 and taught in Alaska for 14 years before moving to New England. He now teaches Latin at Masuk High School in Monroe, Conn.


Yu Liang Chen (1983) made Order of the Engineer (Link #137). He resides in Baltimore. Adam Gilbert (1983) is a visiting assistant professor of musicology in the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. He joined “the other USC” this fall after spending the past two years as a visiting assistant professor of musicology at Stanford University. He and wife, Rotem, had a baby girl, Sivan Greitser, on Sept. 18, 2005. She joins brothers Ilai, 6, and Ohad, 3. Judy C. (Steele) Black (1984) married Thomas D. Black on May 23, 2005. Kelley (Grady) Dunkelberg (1987) returned to her civilian job from eight months serving on active duty in the Navy, and took over management of the Arabic, Armenian, and Georgian language training programs at the U.S. State Department’s National Foreign Affairs Training Center/ Foreign Service Institute in Arlington, Va. There she oversees language and culture training to diplomats and U.S. government officials. She also been promoted to commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Robert Burton Scearce II (1987) is a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy. He just transferred from the Commander Operational Test and Evaluation Force in Norfolk, Va. He received the Meritorious Service Medal for performance during that tour. On Aug. 29 he reported to Expeditionary Warfare Training Group, Atlantic, at the Naval Amphibious Base, also in Norfolk.

Stuart H. Coleman (1988) is author of the book Eddie Would Go (St. Martin’s Press 2004), which won the Excellence in Nonfiction Award from the Hawaii Stuart H. Coleman, award-winning author Book Publishers Association and the Cades Award for Literature. An international edition recently was published by Random House, and he is working with a production company in Los Angeles to make a movie version of the book. For more information, go to Coleman is working on his next project, tentatively titled “Makaha Means Fierce: The Story of Hawaii’s Wild West Side.” Michael R. Thigpen (1988) recently began work on his master’s degree in early childhood education at USC. He hopes to graduate in May 2006 and begin teaching. He and wife Melissa have been married since 1997, and son William began kindergarten this year. Four cats and a Sheltie puppy round out the family. Gene Godbold and Kristen (Hyer) Godbold (1989), who met in Dr. Scott Goode’s chemistry class in fall of 1985, have since ventured deep into biology. Their Tristan, Perrin, Cullen, and Liam Godbold soak seventh experiment up summer is due in January 2006. Kristen stays busy home-schooling the four oldest: Tristan, 13, Perrin 10.5, Cullen 7.5, and Liam, 6. In between their studies, they assist in keeping the house and five-acre “yard” (it’s actually mixed woods and meadow) in some semblance of order. Owen, 3.5, and Phineas, 2, keep everyone on their toes. Kristen recently took up knitting for stress relief. In 2005, Gene was promoted to principal research scientist in international technology assessments within the Battelle Memorial Institute. He is a deacon in the Anglican Province in America, and the Godbolds are active at All Saints’ Anglican Church in Charlottesville, Va. Boyce M. Lawton III (1989) recently completed his doctorate in educational administration at USC. His dissertation focused on computer literacy in the liberal arts college and its relationship to regional accrediting agency requirements. He is the assistant dean

for special programs and director of information management at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C. Lawton and wife Amy have two sons: Will, 3, and Drew, 2. Michael Zilligen (1989) recently joined Solara, a division of CommonHealth, as senior vice president. Solara is a managed healthcare consultancy providing strategic and tactical solutions specific to reimbursement to pharmaceutical and medical device companies. He resides in Doylestown, Pa., with wife Jackie and children Matthew, 5, and Rachel, 2. They moved to Doylestown in 1996 from Scottsdale, Ariz.

1990s Larry Salley (1990) and Ann Brown Salley (1992) had an exciting summer. Larry teaches seventh-grade history at Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, S.C. He wrote a teacher’s grant that allowed the Salley family, including children David, 11, Jacob, 8, and Mary Elizabeth, 6, to travel across the U.S. and back in an RV. The trip took 30 days. “We saw many national parks and visited museums and landmarks—it was the trip of a lifetime!” says Ann. Visit their Web site at to read journal entries and see photos from the trip. R. Dean Foreman (1990) and wife Charlotte announce the birth of daughter Jea-

nette in January 2004. They now have two children; son Ian, 5, just began school. Foreman is still working as the senior economist in corporate planning for ExxonMobil Corporation in Irving, Texas. Christine Companion Varnado (1990) and husband Rob (USC law 1994) are pleased to announce the birth of daughter Anne Wilson Varnado on May 16, 2005. Anne also is welcomed by big brother Davis, 2. Christine is a partner at the Charleston law firm Kernodle Taylor & Root, and serves on the Charleston County Board of Elections and Voter Registration. John “Jay” Rinehart Jr. (1992) has been promoted to president and CEO of Rinehart Realty Corp. in Rock Hill, S.C. He served as executive vice president and legal counJohn Rinehart sel of the company for eight years. Rinehart Realty, which has been in business for 30 years, is the tri-county area’s largest independent real estate company, offering residential and commercial brokerage, real estate development, and real estate property management. He will remain a partner in the law firm of Rinehart, Matthews, Schiller, Shaw & Reeves LLC, also located in Rock Hill.

Pass us a note ... a Class Note! We’d like to hear what you’ve been up to! Please send us your professional or personal news. Remember, we love photos, and we’ll send them back to you after publication. NEW! Class notes and photos may be submitted online. Visit and click on “Alumni.” Or, fill out the form below and return it to AHA!, S.C. Honors College, USC, Columbia, SC 29208; or fax to 803-777-2214; or e-mail to Name ____________________________________________________________ Year of Graduation__________________________________________________ Address ___________________________________________________________ City _____________________________ State ____________ZIP ____________ Phone ____________________________________________________________ Is this a new address or phone number? ❏ Yes ❏ No E-mail address______________________________________________________ May we publish your e-mail address? ❏ Yes ❏ No Write your news below (please add a sheet of paper if you need more room). __________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________



Christy Ann Tinnes (1992) practices law in Washington, D.C., and lives on a sailboat named Carolina Girl in Annapolis, Md. She recently spent a week chartering in the British Virgin Islands with Joann Teal (SCHC 1992) and Mary Tileston Wagner (USC 1992). The three were captain and crew of their own 43-foot boat. Minnie Goodwin Glymph (1993) lives in Raleigh, N.C., with husband Steve (USC 1989) and sons David, 5, and Nathan, 19 months. She is associate director for editorial services at the Office of Creative Services and Marketing Communications, Duke University Health System, and editor of DukeMed Magazine. She authored a book for the University, Duke Chapel Illuminated, in 2001, and is at work on a coffee-table book about the Sarah P. Duke Gardens.



David McLendon (1993) completed his MBA at USC in 1996 and JD at Loyola School of Law in New Orleans in 2001. He is a practicing attorney in New Orleans. He married Tracy, a Louisiana State University alumna, in 2002. He says, “I look forward to hosting the ‘First Annual Sugar Bowl Cocktail Party’ in New Orleans, soon. Go Cocks!” Two weeks after Hurricane Katrina, David added, “Tracy and I are very fortunate. We live in uptown New Orleans, some of the highest ground in the city. I got into Orleans Parish yesterday and our house was completely dry with only one window blown out and some boards blown off the back of the house! Amazing … I promise the Crescent City will rise up from this tragedy and be better than ever. Please come visit us soon in the Big Easy!” Sherry Lamb Boswell (1994) is keeping busy as a stay-at-home mom of daughter Taylor, 4, and new addition Jared, 5 months. Heather Broadwater (1994) received a master’s degree in human resources from USC in 1996, and began working in the human resources field in Georgia. In 2003, she received her JD from Georgetown University Law Center. Since then, she has been working as a labor and employment attorney with Krupin O’Brien LLC in Washington, D.C., and living in northern Virginia. She focuses on training and preventive counseling to help employers meet their business objectives in a legally compliant manner. Scott Murray (1994) has been in Minneapolis for a couple of years. He writes: “Before mov-

ing here I thought myself a citizen of the world, but I have discovered that I am a Southerner. I’m recording my fourth disc of music now (for the latest see www.platonicbomb. Singer/songwriter Scott Murray: keeping warm com) and fixing up my new house, a three-story leviathan of asbestos and lead heaved together in pieces since 1905 without a thought to insulation (it was warm up here back then?) No wife or children yet. Had my first real run-in with the law last week after purchasing a beer with a fake $20 bill (who knew?). A boost both to street credibility and to legal bills. Still traveling when I can—25 states and a smattering of former dictatorships in Central America last year. Preparing for winter.” Zac Moore (1994) was recently re-elected to a third term on the board of directors for the New York Citizens’ Environmental Coalition, serving more than 110 groups across the state. He is entering his fifth year with the Partnership for Onondaga Creek to stop a controversial sewage plant in Syracuse, N.Y., and is working to reform failed enforcement of Title VI civil rights cases with the Environmental Protection Agency. He is completing a feature-length documentary on the subject. He still gets together once a year with dorm buddies stretching back to his first year in the Honors College. Edward “Lloyd” Raleigh (1994) is an ecologist for the World Wildlife Fund in Shangri-la, China. Stories and pictures of his work and travel are online at—search for “lraleigh.” Greg Rollings (1994) recently took a job as an assistant principal at Darlington High School, after spending the past nine years as a classroom teacher, department chair, administrative assistant, and baseball coach at Batesburg-Leesville High School. Stephen Brown (1995) has been promoted to vice president of Manning Selvage & Lee, Atlanta’s leading public relations firm and part of the Publicis global communications network. Brown developed and runs MS&L Media Mindshare, a team of dedicated media relations strategists who serve clients such as The Home Depot, Philips Electronics, Cingular Wireless, The CocaCola Company, and UPS.

Lara Ducate (1995) graduated with a Ph.D. in German and applied linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin in 2003. While she was in Austin, she met her husband, William Fairchild, and got married in Rome during the summer of 2001. Since graduating from UT, she has been back in Columbia teaching in the German program at USC. Jennifer (Holder) Fitz (1995, MBA 1997) is a housewife in West Columbia. Brian Tullis (1995) earned his master’s degree in international business from USC in 1997 (French track). He lives near Washington, D.C., and is the director of information services for Alcoa Fastening Systems, a business unit of aluminum giant Alcoa. AFS makes fasteners for the commercial and military aerospace markets and commercial vehicle and railroad markets. He is responsible for information technology software, services, and employees that support more than 3,600 users across 26 worldwide manufacturing and distribution locations. Khoa Nguyen Vo (1995) and Margaret (Williamson) Vo (1995) have relocated to Margaret’s hometown of Savannah, Ga. They have four cats: Farley, Poo Poo, Mr. Frank, and Spicy. Margaret, who has a master’s degree in environmental health from USC, has been working for the past few years for various environmental agencies. She recently switched gears and is now creating and selling handcrafted jewelry in Gallery 11 in Savannah’s City Market as well as on her online store at www. Khoa recently completed his residency in general psychiatry and his fellowship in child and

adolescent psychiatry, both at the Medical University of South Carolina. He has just opened a solo private practice in Savannah. Laura A. Hall (1996) continues to believe in public service, the importance of good management, and the necessity of American engagement overseas, after seven years at the U.S. Department of State. She only occasionally fantasizes about getting an engineering degree in order to work on tangible projects, or leaving for a high-paying management consulting firm so she can do work for the government at twice the pay. However, the State Department mission always wins out: to create a secure, democratic, prosperous world for the benefit of the American people and the international community. Casey Bonds Martin (1997) and John Martin ( USC 1996, JD 2000) welcomed daughter Madeline Anne into the world on March 1, 2005. She weighed 7 lbs., 7 oz., and was 19.25 inches long. You can see her at www. John is an attorney with Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, and Casey serves as special assistant to the president for legislative matters at the Medical University of South Carolina. They reside in Columbia. Jessica Nash (1997) is a nonfiction editor at Atlas Publishing House in Amsterdam, where she resides with her husband, Elmar Carpers, who is Dutch. They were married on Dec. 29, 2004. Katie Bishop (1998) worked for accounting firm KPMG in Greenville, S.C., and Washington, D.C., before accepting a two-

AHA! Staff Spotlight Retired associate dean Jim Stiver and his wife Marta recently sold Rose Hall, the bed and breakfast near campus that they owned and operated together. Rose Hall is now owned by Sue Bestwick, and according to Jim, will still be a great place to stay when visiting Columbia. The Web site is The Stivers continue to reside in Columbia and plan to spend more time with their five grandchildren. “With (new Jim Stiver dean) Davis Baird’s blessing,” said Stiver, “I will continue to teach honors courses—at least until the legislature finds out what I’m doing.” He is currently teaching an honors logic class and the honors seminar American Curmudgeons and Misanthropes. Marta plans to open an antique furniture booth, and the couple also would like to engage in some “inn-sitting.” Jim is in the process of establishing a college admission consultancy, College Insight. He loves to hear from alumni, so please stay in touch. His e-mail address is

year rotation in KPMG’s London office, where she was promoted to audit manager in October 2004. She is looking forward to her final year in London and will likely return to D.C. in the summer of 2006. Elizabeth Chandler (1998) will complete her master’s degree in public policy and administration at the London School of Economics this December. While Elizabeth Chandler, sightseeing in her new city in London, she is a research assistant to Baroness Elspeth Howe, a crossbench peer in the House of Lords. Prior to moving to London, she lived in Washington, D.C., for five years, where she worked for the Gore/Lieberman 2000 presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee, then managed accounts at a public relations firm. After graduating, she plans to move back to D.C. and pursue a career in public policy. Lane McFadden (1998) is an appellate attorney in the environment and natural resources division of the U.S. Department of Justice. Sara (Kreitzer) Bates (1999) and husband Greg just welcomed their first child into the world on June 18th. They named her Adelaide Louise. saraebates@yahoo. com

Adelaide Louise Bates

Ashley Jones Brewer (1999) began a full-year doctoral internship with Richland School District 2 and Richland Springs Palmetto Health, both in Columbia. She expects to complete her Ph.D. in school psychology from USC in 2006. Liam Palmer (1999) earned his Ph.D. in chemistry from the Scripps Research Institute in 2005. He recently began postdoctoral studies at Northwestern University. Megan Stuart Ryan (1999) is the new morning meteorologist at WAPT, a television station in Jackson, Miss.

2000s Shannon Cox Baker (2000) fulfilled a lifelong dream by backpacking throughout several South American countries for four months this winter with husband Chad. She just moved to Boulder, Colo. to begin an MBA/MS dual degree program in environmental studies. She plans to concentrate her studies in entrepreneurship and environmental sustainability. She is looking forward to her first Rocky Mountain ski season! Emily Streyer Carlisle (2000) and Eric Carlisle (USC 1998) are living in Baltimore, where they recently celebrated their fourth wedding anniversary. Emily is a third-year medical student at Johns Hopkins University. Eric is a senior Web consultant and is working part-time on his MBA, also at Hopkins. They have a cat, Seymour, and a dog, Murphy. Ashley Copeland Wiggins (2000) is a family practice resident at Self Regional Heathcare in Greenwood, S.C. She and husband Nolan are expecting their first child in September. Cathleen Defever (2001) recently returned to South Carolina after working in Washington, D.C., and in Cleveland, Ohio. She is back at USC, studying full-time for her master’s in international business. Meredith Dukes (2004) has been employed by Accenture Consulting in Washington, D.C., since October 2004. She is working on a communications project with the U.S. Army, but expects to take on a variety of projects throughout her career with Accenture. She lives in Arlington, Va., and has made many friends in the area, but returns often to South Carolina to visit those from her hometown and the University. She reports that she looks forward to attending the brunch in October and catching up with old friends. Ekta Rawal Garg (2001) was just named vice president of the board of the Friends of the Tualatin (Ore.) Public Library, and has started freelancing for a local weekly paper. Her husband is in the third year of his internal medicine residency and plans to specialize in cardiology.

Angela (Johnson) Morris (2000) and Ben Morris (2000) are in the second year of their medical residencies. Angela is in family medicine in Anderson, S.C., and Ben is in medicine in Greenville, S.C. He is planning to train in anesthesia next year. They are expecting their third child, a girl, in December 2005. She will join Alex, 3, and Cameron, 16 months. Jennifer Rainman (2000) earned her master’s degree in library and information science from USC in August 2004. She works for, based near Seattle, as the European geographer. Pamela (Muir) Fairbank (2002) moved to Texas with husband Chris after graduation, where she began graduate studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She is working toward her doctorate in molecular cell and developmental biology. Currently she is studying a gene involved in eye development, and will expand her dissertation to include further studies of early eye development. She gave birth to her first child, Ariana Jacquelyn, on Nov. 17, 2004. “She is nine months old now and just got her first tooth last week,” reports Pamela. “She is such a delight to have in our lives!” Sarah K. Hammond (2002) recently graduated from the University of Iowa with her MFA in playwriting. She has been commissioned by South Coast Repertory Theater to write a new play, and she took another script, Green Girl, to the Bay Area Playwrights Festival in August. In Columbia, Trustus Theater will produce her play Wax Work in May 2006. “It’s a fun one,” she says. “Come see it!” Aaron Hark (2002) graduated from USC again in December 2003 with a master’s in public adminNewlyweds Aaron and istration. He Candice Hark married Candice (Hauglum) Hark (2003) in September 2004 in Houston, Texas. After working and traveling for the last year and a half, they are now both first-year medical students at the University of Virginia. Aaron: Candice:

Angela Muir Smith (2002) and Jonathon Smith welcomed their second child, Lillian Maie, on Aug, 17, 2005. She joins big brother Jacob Logan, 2. Braden Core (2003) is in his third year of law school at Indiana UniversityBloomington. Last summer he clerked at Scopelitis, Garvin, Light & Hanson, PC, in Indianapolis. Stephanie (Walker) Yancey (2003) moved to Myrtle Beach after graduation and married David Yancey (USC 2003) on April 24, 2004. They had a Mia England Yancey daughter named Mia England on April 26, 2005. Stephanie was awarded a master’s degree in teaching with a concentration in secondary social studies on Aug. 12, 2005. Stephanie (Walker)Yancey She is a teacher with husband David with the Horry County School District. Gordon Stuart Bagwell (2004) has completed the course work portion of his master’s degree in professional communication at Clemson University, and is now turning his attention to an assistantship designing Web-based training for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, through Clemson’s Strom Thurmond Institute. He plans to parlay this work into a capstone project and graduate in late 2006, after which he will seek employment in user-centered information architecture and design. Christopher Neal Coyle (2004) is a second-year law student at Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Ore. Matthew Hodge (2004) and Maura (Kurtz) Hodge (2004) were married in Columbia on June 18, 2005. Matt attends the technology and public policy program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Maura works for accounting firm KPMG.



After a long, hot summer it’s time to cool off with Science of the Arctic

tions to teach that knowledge to children, organizing and designing the Spring Polar Festival, and managing the ‘Go Polar!’ club and newsletter,” she said. “This variety was especially valuable to me because my career inter-

est field is wide open, and I was able to experiment with several career areas that attract me, through the medium of this one course.” Matthew Whitehouse (2005), a music major, found he really enjoyed working with the children, in addition to learning something he did not expect. “These two classes had a huge impact on me and my work as an organist and composer,” he said. “When I enrolled in Science of the Arctic, I really did not know what I was getting myself into and had no idea of the effect my participation would have.”

One of the latest course offerings through the Honors College is really cool—literally! Science of the Arctic and the follow-up course, Polar Science, allowed students to explore and understand the climate, environmental impact, and indigenous people of the Arctic. Students also had the opportunity to share their newfound knowledge with the public, specifically elementary school children and their parents, through a program called “Go Polar!” And professor Doug Williams and his colleagues devised it all. Williams—he likes to be called Dr. Doug—has a Ph.D. in oceanography from the University of Rhode Island. With a grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation, he and Russian colleagues studied the history of freshwater input from the fifth longest river system in the world, the Lena River, into the Arctic Ocean. Another grant from the NSF brought “Go Polar!” to life and gave 29 students from the Honors College the opportunity of a lifetime. When Chanda Cooper (biology 2007) heard about the course, she knew she had to participate: “When Dr. Doug presented his ideas for the Science of the Arctic course, there was no way I could turn down the opportunity. It offered such a variety of experiences—learning about the Arctic, creating experiments and presenta-



SCHC author notes Kudos to SCHC alumnus Brian K. Nunnally! Nunnally is the coeditor of the 2003 book Prions and Mad Cow Disease (Marcel Dekker, Inc.). The book compiles the scientific findings of 36 international experts on mad cow disease. He coedited the book with Northeastern University professor Ira Krull.

Brian Nunnally

Prions and Mad Cow Disease includes a wide variety of topics, starting with a focus on the proteins, known as prions, that cause the disease. It extends into several chapters on the many methodologies and techniques for detecting mad cow disease, and the policies in place to protect the U.S. population. The book also offers models for estimating probabilities of its spread. “There have been many books about mad cow and other prion diseases,” said Nunnally. “Few have dealt with the subject of testing and the methodology employed to detect (it).” According to Nunnally, Prions and Mad Cow Disease is intended for scientists. “I think there are some chapters that would interest anyone who was interested in mad cow disease, however,” he said.

The results of Matthew’s participation included a composition for the organ, “On Viewing the Island Orb from Afar,” inspired by the “blue marble” images of Earth from the moon taken by the Apollo astronauts. “For me, ‘Go Polar!’ was an amazing illustration of the artistic possibilities created when science and music intersect.” Led by Science of the Arctic student Katrina Phillips (marine science 2007), children crawl around the globe pretending to be warm and cold ocean currents. Phillips designed this activity to give elementary school children a feel for the global ocean conveyor belt that plays a major role in how the oceans mix and how the earth maintains its present climate.

The polar-related proseminars are over for now, but Williams hopes to bring them back in some form during the International Polar Year, in 2007–2008. —Michele Marple Thomas (1992)

Nunnally graduated from USC in 1994. He majored in chemistry and marine science, and completed two— yes, two—honors theses, in chemistry and religion. Of his thesis in religion, he said, “I used the escape clause that allowed me to pursue a thesis in any subject, not just my major field.” Nunnally went on to earn a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry and a certificate in molecular biophysics from Duke University in 1998. Nunnally didn’t always plan to become an analytical chemist. He spent his first two years of college up to his armpits in algae, conducting research for marine science professor Dick Zingmark. Later he landed in Scott Goode’s chemistry lab, all the while swearing to himself—and to Dr. Goode—that he would never become an analytical chemist. “I remember him chuckling to himself and politely agreeing with me,” said Nunnally. “Of course, now he has the last laugh given my chosen profession is analytical chemistry.” Today Nunnally works for pharmaceutical and biotechnology company Wyeth, where he is an associate director in the Good Manufacturing Practices Operations

Group within Vaccine Analytical Development. He resides in Apex, N.C., with wife Deedra and their two children, Brian Jr. and Annabelle. He recently published a second book, The Analytical Chemistry of DNA Sequencing. His e-mail address is uscduke@ Are you published? We’d like to hear about your book or article. E-mail

Mad cow disease facts Mad cow disease is the commonly used name for Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), a slowly progressive, degenerative, fatal disease affecting the central nervous system of adult cattle. The exact cause of BSE is not known. It is generally accepted by the scientific community that infectious forms of prions cause BSE. Source: United States Food and Drug Administration

O’Leary wins Outstanding Honors Faculty award A good teacher can influence the direction of a student’s life, including her choice of major. Just ask Mary Ellen O’Leary, math professor and 2005 winner of the Outstanding Honors Faculty award. “My verbal scores were higher than quantitative scores and, although I liked math, I didn’t enter college intending to choose mathematics. An excellent professor, though, revealed the beauty and elegance of the discipline, along with the joys of meeting the challenges that mathematics can present,” said O’Leary, who has a bachelor’s degree from Nazareth College in Rochester, N.Y., and a master’s degree from the University of Michigan, with further study at the University of Detroit—all in mathematics. Each year South Carolina Honors College seniors nominate professors for the award, which was endowed five years ago with a gift from Honors College alumnus Michael A. Hill, who graduated in 1992 with a degree in international studies. The college’s senior marshals select finalists and a winner through a review of each professor’s

record of teaching and service, letters of support, and course evaluations. Senior marshal Matt Wilkinson (Baccalaureus 2005), who took O’Leary’s Math 142 course during his first semester at USC, said he can’t think of a more deserving winner. “She has all of the qualities that are required of an educator. She is caring, compassionate, interested in the students, and truly motivated to teach,” Wilkinson said.

O’Leary said. “Honors students tend to be enthusiastic and ready to participate. They work together very well, and as the weeks go on, a true community of learners is formed. “Even after a course ends, many honors students stay in touch,” she said. “It’s inspiring to follow their careers through the University and beyond and to see all they are able to accomplish.”

Some of O’Leary’s favorite moments come toward the end of the semester, she recalled, “when someone says ‘I never thought I was good in math, but now I realize I can do it.’ Or Mary Ellen O’Leary poses after Helping students, especially fresha future teacher comments ‘I’ve always been delivering her speech at Honors men, realize how much time and afraid of math and now I can’t wait to teach College Revocation in May. effort is necessary for success in a colit,’” she said. “It’s very rewarding when I’m lege mathematics course is one of able to reverse years of negative attitudes. I also O’Leary’s biggest teaching chalstrive to answer the ‘When will I ever use this?’ lenges. “Talented students may have felt that paying attenquestion and to show students the universality of mathetion in class was sufficient in high school, and now they matics,” O’Leary said. find they have to work hard both in and outside of class,” In keeping with Honors College tradition, O’Leary O’Leary said. addressed the graduating class at revocation ceremonies Teaching the variety of students who take honors courses in May and the incoming class at convocation in August. is enjoyable for O’Leary. “Every class develops a unique She is teaching Calculus I this fall. personality, so that each group offers a new experience,” —Alexa Maddox

Paying tribute: Dr. Carolyn Matalene

Michele Marple Thomas and her oldest son, Cameron, in summer 2004

I think we can all name at least one professor whom we really admired during our college careers. For me, that person was Professor Emerita Carolyn Matalene. Before retiring in July 2002, Dr. Matalene taught in the English department. I was lucky enough to have two classes with her: one on creative nonfiction and the other on arguments.

While I was in school, I admired Dr. Matalene because she was direct and clear in her teaching style. She was also hip and cool! I remember her walking around the room, dressed in Chanel, looking at our writing over our shoulders and giving constructive feedback. She was honest, but kind, in her reviews, which made me feel safe as a writer to keep trying, even if my pieces still needed a lot of work. Since joining the ranks of the working world, my admiration for Dr. Matalene’s teaching has grown. On a daily basis, I use the tools I learned in her classes. I recently caught up with Dr. Matalene, who, along with her husband, also a professor emeritus, splits her time between homes in Charleston, S.C., and Long Island, N.Y. How is life as a “distinguished professor emerita?” Retirement is wonderful and great fun. I don’t know how I ever had time to work. Since moving to Charleston, I have become a volunteer in Tom Waldrep’s Writing Center at the Medical University. I tutor medical students, faculty, nurses, therapists, whoever needs help. The nurses write very complex research studies. Last spring I helped a number of students in speech pathology who were taking a course in swallowing. Yes, an entire course in swallowing. But I also have a new book project. For USC’s Bicentennial,

Kathryn Chaddock, a colleague in the College of Education, and I did a book of letters by Carolina students called Carolina Voices, Two Hundred Years of Student Experiences. We had such fun doing the research and editing that we are now doing a similar book for the College of Charleston, which is even older than USC. It will be different, though, since C of C students always lived at home so had no need to write letters. We still plan to tell its story with primary documents, memoirs, journals, minutes, and the like. I love doing archival research and Charleston is full of old documents and citizens who remember.

demic writing you do, the more you will mess up your prose. Who can read academic literary criticism now? But these days, getting an MFA seems to provide entry into the world of publishing. The University of Iowa, for example, constitutes a club of writers who make sure their students get published. If you don’t have a mentor, it’s pretty hard to break in. But, of course, there are exceptions all the time. If you are lucky, you are born with some talent and then you work very, very hard. What do you see in the future for the fields of communications and writing? I see happening what I have been saying for years: nonfiction is the most important genre today. And in a recent interview, V.S. Naipaul agreed. This is the first great age of nonfiction. Look at how many current best sellers are now nonfiction. In the information age, we want information. Much contemporary fiction aspires to teach us about the world; Ian McEwan’s last novel, Saturday, explained and described brain surgery.

You and your husband, Dr. Bill Matalene, like to travel. Where have you been lately and what adventures do you have planned for the future? Last October I did a bicycle trip in Myanmar (Burma). In February we did an Audubon Trip in Copper Canyon, Mexico; in March we spent a week in Venice; and in May I went sea kayaking in the Galapagos. Next Carolyn Matalene with husband week the two of us are taking off on a cruise Bill, otherwise known as the captain of their boat the Good Times III, aboard our sailboat, Good Times, to Maine. docked here in Newport, R.I. Then in October we are going sea kayaking What advice do you have for aspirin Ha Long Bay, Vietnam, with some time in ing writers? Hui and Hoi An and Bangkok. We’ll probably spend a week Keep writing. Learn some rhetoric; it works. And learn a in Rome next spring to satisfy Bill’s need for European high lot about something. culture. He has taken up painting and will have his own stuWhat do you miss the most about your days at USC? dio in Charleston next winter. The students—having a new group every semester was I remember you telling our class that you don’t have to truly the fountain of youth. I love hearing from them and go to graduate school to be a good creative writer and stay in touch with quite a few. that, in fact, some people say that the more schooling you have the less creative you become. How do you feel —Michele Marple Thomas (1992) about that statement today? The word “creative” always makes me nervous. All writing If you would like to “Pay tribute” to your favorite professor is creative. I think what I was saying was that the more acain the next issue of AHA!, please contact Carissa Hansford



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AHA, you heard our call We called and you answered! The 2004–2005 Honors College Annual Fund campaign was a huge success, with honors alumni giving more than double the previous year. Thank you! Contributions collected during the annual fund campaign go toward scholarships for honors students who receive little or no other financial aid. As tuition continues to rise, the college must rely on the support of our alumni to increase the endowment that keeps these scholarships alive. The 2006 campaign kicks off Feb. 21. We hope you’ll take our call. Don’t want to wait until February? Give online any time at or call Carissa Hansford at 803-777-8102.






97 Pledges

172 Pledges

$8,000 raised

$18,140 raised

Students of distinction

Goldwater scholars Epps, Mitchell, and Czako

Rita Czako, Alisha Epps, and Christopher Mitchell were named 2005 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars. They were selected on the basis of academic merit, along with 317 other science, mathematics, and engineering students, from a pool of 1,091 applicants nationwide. The one- and two-year scholarships will cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

Mould Scholarship recipient Kristy Schleibaum

Laura Sima

Kristy Schleibaum hails from Burke, Va. She is a proud recipient of a William H. Mould Scholarship to help cover tuition expenses for the 2005– 2006 academic year.

Schleibaum’s family recently experienced a tragic loss when her father passed away. Moreover, her younger brother graduated from high school last spring and planned to begin college this fall. Confronted with the rising cost of out-of-state tuition, Schleibaum found relief in the form of a Mould Scholarship. “The Mould lessens the financial tension in my family,” she said. Schleibaum, a chemistry major, maintains a 3.95 GPA despite a rigorous academic curriculum. She is active in several organizations on campus, including the marching band, and was a resident advisor at Bates House. She plans to become a high school chemistry teacher.

Laura Sima has been awarded a 2005 Morris K. Udall Scholarship, the eighth USC student to win the award since 1999. The award is named after U.S. Representative Morris K. Udall (D-Ariz.) to recognize and encourage students who have demonstrated outstanding potential and a commitment to pursuing careers related to the environment. Rotary Scholar Thomas Scott (Baccalaureus 2006) met with Nobel laureate Desmond Tutu in South Africa, where he is studying for one year.

2005–2006 Help us double our pledges and funds raised!

Thomas Scott with Desmond Tutu in South Africa

To the alumni who contributed to the Mould Fund she said: “It is because of your generosity that I feel like ‘family’ is the best word to describe my experience at USC. I feel like I have truly found a home here because of your kindness and the kindness of my teachers, other University faculty, my friends at USC, and, of course, the people at the Honors College.”

AHA! Fall 2005  

AHA! is the official newsletter of the University of South Carolina Honors College and is published twice yearly for alumni, students, paren...

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