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GLOBAL IMPACT Hatters Driving Change Across Continents STETSON





Senior Toast On April 24, in what is an annual tradition, Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D., hosted the Champagne Toast in the President’s Garden, next to the President’s Home on Stetson’s historic campus in DeLand, Florida. Libby congratulated members of the 2017 Stetson senior class and encouraged them to continue pursuing lives of significance. The students were given champagne flutes as commemorative gifts.







President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D. Vice President of University Marketing Bruce Chong Assistant Vice President, Marketing/Media Relations Janie Graziani

28 Departments


Designers Michelle Martin Rebecca Hagen

2 BEGINNINGS Senior Toast

22 Final Act

Editorial Assistant Donna Nassick

6 WELCOME Global Citizenship 8 INTELLIGENTSIA News and Notes About Knowledge 18 FIRST PERSON Teaching in Shenzhen, China 20 IMPACT Gifts of Exploration 50 ATHLETICS Year at a Glance

Curator Roberta Smith Favis steps down following the 24th exhibit she has organized for Stetson.

26 Lab Results

The final analysis: By virtue of ambition and effort, graduates in the Department of Psychology are raising the bar on scientific — and personal — discovery.

28 ‘The Noblest Calling’

Music Professor and Steinway Artist Michael Rickman retires and becomes Professor Emeritus.

56 ALUMNI Hatters Celebrate Stetson 62 THE CLASSES Accolades and Achievements 67 PARTING SHOT Standing Tall


Editor Michael Candelaria



Contributing Staff Jordan Foley, Ricky Hazel, Cory Lancaster, Brandi Palmer Writers J. Anthony Abbott, Ph.D., Andy Butcher, Marie Dinklage, Amy Gipson, Marcia Heath, Heather Hunter, Frank Klim, Jack Roth, Ray Weiss, Trish Wieland Art and Photography Bobby Fishbough, Joel Jones Class Notes Editor Cathy Foster STETSON UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE is published three times a year by Stetson University, DeLand, FL 32723, and is distributed to its alumni, families, friends, faculty and staff. The magazine is printed on FSC-certified paper. The College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business Administration and School of Music are at the historic main campus in DeLand. The College of Law is in Gulfport/St. Petersburg. The university also has two satellite centers: the Tampa Law Center and the Stetson University Center at Celebration near Orlando.



Global Impact Issue 32 World Fellowship

Stetson values are in motion near and far.

34 Role Reversal

With a global view, as faculty become better students, they become better teachers.

36 Face to Face

The Mentored Field Experience teaches Stetson students about the world, one real lesson at a time.

38 Savory Achievement

Associate Professor of Math Hari Pulapaka, Ph.D., mixes part classroom and part kitchen into his secret sauce filled with zest. The results add up nicely.

40 Undercover Education

A former Colombian judge offers all-too-real-world lessons to her students.

42 Safeguarding Planet Earth

The College of Law’s commitment to the environment stretches across the world. For evidence, look to the professor who has taken the lead.

44 Seeds of Knowledge

Former soccer star Timothy Oyebode Olagbemiro continues to achieve in homeland Nigeria.

46 ‘Not Just One way’

From Iceland to Stetson and back, Sonja Scott teaches lessons about looking at the world.

47 Soldier of Safety

For Todd Du Bosq, the weapons of choice are “cuttingedge research” and “best technology available.”

48 Resounding Voice

Lauren Nieuwland pushes boundaries in both international business and world-class opera.

49 Empowering Youth

Matt Morton continues his global pursuit of developing young people.


100 SEASONS A look at Hatter baseball through the years.






e have devoted this magazine issue to our university’s global impact, and the ways that Stetson students, alumni, faculty, staff and friends are making a difference far and wide. As you will read on the pages to follow, their actions not only bring personal satisfaction, but also enhance the lives of others.

Global citizenship, in fact, is among our core values at Stetson: “Global citizenship is an important part of Stetson’s mission to prepare students to be informed, active, and engaged citizens of both local communities and the world. Global citizenship includes university and individual commitments to community engagement, diversity and inclusion, environmental responsibility, and social justice.” Global citizens are everywhere. They are students who study abroad or engage in service projects in other countries, as well as faculty who bring their international experiences to bear in their teaching and research. They are international alumni and alumni who choose to live and work across the globe. Global impact also is about doing what we can to make our own communities the best they can be. It is about working to reduce our environmental footprint from wherever we are. And it is about being open to ideas and experiences — sometimes outside our comfort zones and our own cultures — that enhance our understanding of others and, in turn, ourselves. All of this you will find in the pages of this issue because advancing knowledge, improving communities and developing potential are core to our university’s mission. It is part of what makes us “world class” and creates a vital environment in which to educate the next generation of leaders. Thank you for all you do to enrich the Stetson community!

Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D. President Stetson University



Global citizens are everywhere. They are students who study abroad or engage in service projects in other countries, as well as faculty who bring their international experiences to bear in their teaching and research. They are international alumni and alumni who choose to live and work across the globe.




n May, Stetson University’s Board of Trustees elected four new members and voted to reappoint seven board members to additional four-year terms. The new members all are graduates of Stetson. Susan Brockway ’79 of Boca Raton, Florida, has been a member (and chaired) the board of trustees for St. Andrew’s School, a private Episcopal K-12 school in Boca Raton. Susan worked as a CPA for Coopers & Lybrand in audit and consulting and later as a financial controller. She also has been active on university committees and boards in Virginia and North Carolina, and with her husband, Peter, has supported the Miami Foundation and the Boca Raton Community Hospital. In December 2014, the Brockways established the Peter and Susan Brockway scholarships for business students at Stetson. Susan participated in Leadership Stetson in February 2016. Michael Davis ’05, J.D. ’08 of Miami is a double-Hatter, receiving his undergraduate degree in political science before attending Stetson’s College of Law, where he served in the Student Bar Association and Stetson Law Review and was a member of the Moot Court Team. Along with receiving his Juris Doctor degree, he received Stetson’s Walter Mann Award for being the graduate with the greatest promise of becoming an outstanding leader in the legal profession. Michael joined the Law Offices of Benedict Kuehne in Miami after serving as a federal law clerk and as an assistant public defender for Appellate and Juvenile divi-

sions. He has served on the Stetson University College of Arts and Sciences Advisory Board since 2012. Luis Maldonado ’01 of Atlanta entered Stetson as a first-generation student; he left Stetson as a Commencement speaker. Luis earned his J.D. degree at the University of Florida and worked with the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association before joining the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency as assistant chief counsel. He now is with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as an associate counsel. Luis returned to campus in 2008 to attend Leadership Stetson and has been a member of Stetson’s College of Arts and Sciences Advisory Board since 2012. William Voges ’77, J.D. ’81 of nearby Ormond Beach is another double-Hatter. Bill was a partner in the law firm Fink, Loucks, Sweet and Voges before becoming general counsel for the Root Co. in Ormond Beach. The company, previously known for designing the original Coca Cola bottle in 1916, now manages several real estate properties throughout the Southeast. Bill, part of the Root family’s heritage, served as president and CEO until 2011 and continues to serve as board chairman. He is a trustee of the Graham Family Foundation, William J. Voges

Elizabeth Hall, Stetson University, DeLand, Florida

Foundation and Sumar Foundation. At Stetson, he has served on the Family Enterprise Center Board and the School of Business Administration Advisory Board. They are joined by the seven trustees who were elected for additional terms: Steven Alexander, managing director/ partner in PFM Asset Management; Hyatt Brown, chairman of Brown & Brown; Richard George, president/owner of R. George & Associates; Tony Jenkins, market president for Central Florida for Florida Blue; Brenda Lopez, a retired college educator; Ken Ziesenheim, a financial advisor; and outgoing board chair Luis Prats (another double-Hatter), an attorney with Carlton Fields. The Board of Trustees meets three times a year, with the next meeting scheduled for October at the Stetson University College of Law in Gulfport.









Graduates from Stetson in DeLand, Florida

College of Law graduates in Gulfport, Florida

Graduate students earning master’s degrees

The total was the largest-ever for the university and included 687 undergraduate students.

Among them were 28 part-time J.D. students; 12 J.D./M.B.A. students; two J.D./MINTEC students; one J.D./LL.M. student; two J.D./Grado students; eight LL.M. in Advocacy; two joint J.D./ LL.M. in Advocacy; seven LL.M. in Elder Law; and 12 LL.M. in International Law students.

Degrees were awarded in Education Specialist, Master of Education, Master of Science, Master of Business Administration and Master of Accountancy.


100+/Approximately 100 awards and honors presented as part of 2017 Commencement Students and faculty were recognized for excellence in awards that ranged from A (Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award for dedication to service for others) to almost Z (William Hugh McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching).

4 ROTC graduates commissioned The graduates were commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army.






POLITICAL MIGHT Stetson has eight alumni who currently are members of the Florida Legislature. (In addition, Pam Bondi ’90 J.D. is Florida attorney general.) Hatters in the Florida Legislature: • Senate President Joe Negron ’83 • Sen. Jack Latvala ’73 • Sen. Kathleen Passidomo ’78 J.D. • Rep. James Grant ’09 J.D. • Rep. Thomas J. Leek ’97 J.D. • Rep. Scott Plakon ’81 • Rep. Chris Sprowls ’09 J.D. • Rep. Cyndi Stevenson ’81 Editor’s note: While Senate President Joe Negron pledges to continue keeping a watchful eye on all of Florida’s universities, his most recent action exhibited environmental stewardship, Pam Bondi ’90 J.D. another issue important to Stetson. Negron saluted Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s signing in June of House Bill 7077, Gulf Coast Economic Corridor, which ensures funds received in the settlement of the state’s economic damage Joe Negron ’83 claims caused by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill remain in Northwest Florida’s “eight disproportionately affected communities.”

The Stetson Ethics Team included, from left: Alex Overdijking, Megan Christopher, Sarah Klass and Nate Smith. Team members assumed the identify of corporate consultants.

ALL ABOUT ETHICS Stetson students placed second in their division in the International Business Ethics Case Competition, held in April in Santa Monica, California. The undergraduate field across all divisions included 24 institutions from the United States, Spain and Australia. The University of Illinois won the competition. Stetson team members included Megan Christopher, Sarah Klass, Alex Overdijking and Nate Smith, who were coached by Areti Vogel, instructor of management at Stetson, and Jim Beasley, Ph.D., professor of management in Stetson’s School of Business Administration. Teams invited to the competition select their own case for presentation at the event; the Stetson team prepared a case titled “Johnson & Johnson: A Credible Credo?” Student teams were asked to assume the identity of consultants who are offering advice to a company considering how to deal with an ethical dilemma facing the firm. — Marie Dinklage

DID YOU KNOW? Stetson is surveying its buildings this summer as part of a campuswide effort to switch to LED lighting. Stetson’s Board of Trustees in May approved $1.5 million in the upcoming budget for energy-saving projects, including the retrofitting. The projects are part of the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment. The university is striving to become carbon-neutral by 2050.




John B. Stetson IV, great-grandson of Stetson University’s namesake and benefactor, stands in Palm Court with wife Solveig Stetson. Behind them is Elizabeth Hall, named for his great-grandmother.

Photos: Bobby Fishbough

FAMILY TRADITION John B. Stetson IV, great-grandson of the university’s benefactor, visited the DeLand campus in March for the first time and donated Stetson family memorabilia, including old family Bibles and military medals. Stetson IV, an architect and construction manager from Philadelphia, also brought such items as the documents signed by President Calvin Coolidge in 1925 appointing John B. Stetson Jr., his grandfather, as ambassador to Finland and Poland. Stetson IV made the trip with his wife, Solveig Stetson. “We really felt it would be best to keep [the items] together and in a place where any member of the family can have access to it. ... We’re grateful that Stetson is doing this,” said Stetson IV. Their visit came after Susan Ryan, dean of duPont-Ball Library, received an endowment two years ago from another Stetson descendant to continue researching the history of the family and the Stetson hat company (the Stetson family sold its stake in the company in the 1960s). Ryan identified 124 direct descendants of John Batterson Stetson (1830-1906) and worked with 30 family members to construct a family tree. — Cory Lancaster



Julia Metzker, Ph.D. (standing), executive director of Stetson’s Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence, and Cici (Cynthia) Brown, a longtime Stetson trustee, share a moment at the Colloquium. Brown, along with her husband, J. Hyatt Brown, who also serves on the Board of Trustees, established the Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence in 2014.

COLLOQUIUM SPARKS INNOVATION Stetson’s strategic goal of creating innovative approaches to address real-world and complex challenges in higher education took center stage during the third annual Colloquium on Teaching and Learning on the DeLand campus in April. The event, a signature program of the Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence, featured interactive workshops, sharing sessions, a Brown Innovation Symposium and an experimental arts reception. Keynote speaker was Richard Vaz, Ph.D., inaugural director of Worcester Polytechnic Institute’s Center for Project-Based Learning. He and his team travel the country to help other colleges and universities implement or improve Project-Based Learning on their campuses. This year, the Colloquium expanded to a second day, adding a specialized Project-Based Learning workshop, attended by 22 participants from Stetson and three other institutions (Daytona State College, Capital University and Florida Polytechnic University). “I was encouraged by the number of faculty from our university and other institutions nearby who came together to learn more about high-impact practices and how we can best serve our students,” commented Michele Randall, M.F.A., Sullivan Visiting Lecturer in English — 2015-16 Brown Innovation Fellow, Brown Innovation Fellow mentor and 2017 Colloquium presenter. — Trish Wieland

PRO BONO PROWESS 30,000 / 30 / 400

In 2016, Stetson law students contributed more than 30,000 hours of pro bono service and participated in 30 clinics and externships. Stetson provided students with an opportunity to participate in more than 400 community volunteer opportunities.





Nathan Bodger ‘19

Stetson student Nathan Bodger ’19 envisions a campus with solar panels on buildings, water heated by sunlight, and other conservation measures that will save resources and the environment. Bodger, an Environmental Fellow, led the effort to establish a $5 Green Fee each semester for students to pay for projects that will save money and decrease the university’s environmental impact. Stetson students were surveyed twice about the fee, and both times a majority supported the idea, which also received the backing of the Student Government Association. The Stetson University Board of Trustees approved the fee in May. The idea for the Green Fund dates back several years at Stetson, with Sarah Coffey ‘18, another Environmental Fellow, creating momentum. And other universities have green funds (including Harvard, Stanford, Cornell, Notre Dame, Furman and Rollins College). According to Bodger’s research, however, Stetson might be the lone university whose students pay for the projects through a fee. Projected revenue totals approximately $30,000 annually. Beginning in the fall semester, students may submit ideas for environmental projects on campus. By spring 2018, the Environmental Fellows, an SGA subcommittee and Stetson’s Environmental Working Group, including faculty, administrators and staff, will select three projects. Then, in April 2018, students will vote on the project of their choice in an online poll, and that project will be installed on campus by Facilities Management during summer 2018. Each project must have documentation on how it would save money, such as reducing electricity consumption, and those savings will be rolled back into the Revolving Green Fund. — Cory Lancaster

STETSON LAW GAINS FEDERAL COURT JUDGESHIP Michael P. Allen, professor of law and director of Stetson’s Veterans Law Institute, was selected in early June for a federal judgeship on the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, based in Washington, D.C. At press time, the appointment by President Donald Trump was subject to confirmation by the U.S. Senate. Allen, a renowned expert on the law of veterans’ benefits, has served in a variety of roles at Stetson since 2001. He has received numerous awards for excellence in scholarship and teaching as a professor for 16 years and as an associate dean for four years. Allen also directed Stetson’s internship programs at the Florida Supreme Court, the Florida Second District Court of Appeal, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida. Stetson’s Veterans Law Institute, founded in 2012, serves to increase legal services available to the growing population of military members, veterans and their families in the Tampa Bay area by bringing together volunteers, faculty, students and other community organizations. Congress created the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims in 1988 to hear appeals from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Before the court was created, veterans who were denied benefits did not have access to judicial review. Today, the court hears an average of between 4,000 to 5,000 appeals annually. The original seven-member court has expanded to nine. — Brandi Palmer



Michael P. Allen

Stetson University College of Law and Dean Christopher Pietruszkiewicz remain staunch supporters of public legal services.

PUBLIC DEFENDER In March, Stetson University College of Law Dean Christopher M. Pietruszkiewicz continued a Hatter tradition. He joined 160-plus other deans from public and private law schools across the country in signing a letter in support of maintaining funding for the Legal Services Corp. The publicly funded LSC program is the largest source of support for civil legal-aid organizations across the country, with approximately 1 million low-income Americans depending on these organizations for access to legal services. More than 30 years ago, longtime Stetson adjunct law professor and Stetson Hall of Fame inductee Wm. Reece Smith Jr., thenpresident of the American Bar Association, encouraged lawyers and ABA presidents to send letters to Congress in support of continuing public funding for the LSC program, which also was in danger of losing dollars. Stetson started Florida’s first Public Defender Clinic in 1962. In February, Stetson’s Veterans Law Institute launched a new medical-legal partnership with the nearby Bay Pines Veterans Administration Healthcare System, Bay Area Legal Services and Gulfcoast Legal Services to help qualifying low-income veterans in the area gain greater access to free civil legal services. (In the photo above, Pietruszkiewicz is signing that document.) — Brandi Palmer

DID YOU KNOW? In April, Patrick Coggins, Ph.D., J.D., Ed.S., LL.D., chair of the Faculty Senate and member of the President’s Cabinet at Stetson University, received the 2017 Giving Back Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity, the oldest and largest diversity and inclusion publication in higher education. The honor is the only national award that recognizes college and university administrators for their commitment and dedication to diversity through leadership. Coggins also is a professor of education and multicultural education, who has had extensive experience designing and teaching courses in cultural diversity, multicultural education ESOL, social studies methods and classes on crosscultural communication.




Irene Gilmore retired in May after 59 years with Stetson Dining Services.

At her retirement party in May, Gilmore received a check for $1,102.22, collected from the Stetson community as a going-away present.



SERVING UP SOMETHING SPECIAL In November 1958, Irene Gilmore boarded a Greyhound bus in nearby DeLeon Springs and headed to DeLand for her first day of work in the Stetson cafeteria. Then 19, she started in the salad department in the kitchen of the nearly new Carlton Union Building. In the 58 years since then, she has worked in almost every facet of Stetson Dining: salad prep, cook, baker, chef, cooking instructor, caterer and line server. She has fed three generations of Stetson students — ones who attended early in her career later sent their children and their grandchildren to the university. In May, Gilmore retired. At age 78, Gilmore said she didn’t want to retire, but added, “It’s time.” Her memories are fond. “I helped some students, and they came back and told me,” she said. “Some of them give me Christmas cards. Some of the students come in and give me hugs, so that’s my reward.” — Cory Lancaster

ASSESSING ART In May, Stetson’s Homer and Dolly Hand Art Center became one of 75 institutions selected to participate in the inaugural year of the Collections Assessment for Preservation Program. The Hand Art Center, home to the largest collection of art by Modernist painter Oscar Bluemner, now can benefit from partial funding toward a general conservation assessment — a comprehensive study of its collections, buildings and building systems, as well as its policies and procedures relating to collections care. The assessment program is part of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works. Located on Stetson’s DeLand campus, the 5,000-square-foot center contains more than 1,000 pieces bequeathed to the university by the artist’s daughter, Vera Bluemner Kouba. It also houses a broad collection of artwork by Stetson students, art faculty and alumni, along with multiple galleries. Gallery Director Tonya Curran expects the assessment program to be a first step in the center’s pursuit of accreditation through the American Alliance of Museums. (See Page 22 for a related article.) — Heather Hunter


DID YOU KNOW? This spring, for the 19th time in 23 years, U.S. News & World Report ranked Stetson University College of Law No. 1 in Trial Advocacy. Also, Stetson ranked fourth nationally for Legal Writing. In addition, Stetson ranked among the Most Diverse Law Schools, and its part-time law school program ranked No. 24. Stetson was listed among the top 100 U.S. law schools.

Gallery Director Tonya Curran

Assistant Professor Sean Kennard, M.M.

Many great classical pianists start playing by age 5, but Sean Kennard, M.M. (Juilliard School), started a little late. At age 10, though, he began piano lessons and trained with some of the top teachers in the country in his teens and early 20s. That opportunity, he believes, gives him an edge in teaching. Kennard, an internationally acclaimed classical pianist who has won many piano competitions and played as a soloist with orchestras worldwide, has joined the School of Music as an assistant professor of piano. He replaces retired Professor Michael Rickman, D.M.A. (See Page 28.) Kennard, a D.M.A. candidate at Yale University, was selected from more than 150 qualified applicants. School of Music Dean Thomas Masse, D.M.A., described the hiring as a “wonderful match for Stetson and Stetson for Sean.” Said Kennard: “I love teaching and will always consider it a vital aspect of my musical career. For me, doing so within the framework of an institution and contributing to a larger program is even better.” Kennard also will oversee the Great Pianists at Stetson series and already has lined up artists for the upcoming academic year. — Cory Lancaster




Ryan Newfrock’s father, Joseph, was an Army helicopter pilot before retiring. Ryan wore his father’s uniform at his commissioning in May.

DID YOU KNOW? In the four-year Academic Progress Rate report released in May by the NCAA for all Division I athletics teams, all 17 of Stetson’s NCAA sports performed above the 930 minimum. Three programs achieved perfect scores: men’s cross country, women’s golf and beach volleyball. The women’s golf and men’s cross country programs recently were honored with NCAA Public Recognition Awards for posting APR scores in the top 10 percent of their sport. Implemented in 2003 as part of an ambitious academic reform effort in Division I, the APR report holds institutions accountable for the academic progress of their student-athletes through a team-based metric that accounts for the eligibility and retention of each student-athlete for each academic term.



LEGACY SALUTE While the 2017 Commencement held plenty of drama for many graduates and their families, some stories literally ascended above, such as that of graduating senior Ryan Newfrock. Newfrock was selected as one of only 140 out of 6,000 cadets nationwide for flight school to become, like his father, a helicopter pilot. The story gets even better. During the May 12 ceremony, as he was being commissioned as a second lieutenant in front of his family, Newfrock wore his father’s old Army dress uniform. His father had retired in 1993 at the rank of major. Amazingly, no uniform alterations were needed. — Ray Weiss

QUITE THE FELLOW Sarah Coffey ’18, an environmental science and geography major at Stetson, received a 2017 Newman Civic Fellows Award. The national honor recognizes the “next generation of public problem solvers and civic leaders.” As a first-year student at Stetson, Coffey became the first Stetson University Environmental Values Fellow, a collaboration between the Department of Environmental Science and the Center for Community Engagement. As a Values Fellow, she coordinates on-campus environmental-awareness programs, manages a campus community garden, and works with students and faculty to conduct a bi-annual campus carbon audit to help reduce campus emissions and water usage. — Michael Candelaria

Sarah Coffey

A new dining hall is taking shape.

COMING: A FOOD TRUCK When students return to the DeLand campus in August, there will be a few changes in the Commons Dining Hall, as work continues on the expansion and renovation of the circa-1950s Carlton Union Building. Also, students will find a remodeled and expanded Bookstore, Post Office and convenience store in the CUB. Another highlight: To provide students with additional dining options, a food truck will be parked near Chaudoin Hall across from the CUB. No specifics yet on the mobile menu items. As for project details, for the 2017-2018 academic year, the former Coffee Shop is becoming the serving area, and meals will be prepared in a temporary-kitchen building, just east of the CUB. Dining tables will continue to be available in the Commons, and students also can eat in the Community Lounge on the first floor of the CUB or at one of the tables outside the CUB. When completed in late 2018, the CUB’s additions will greatly expand the Commons, including a glass wall along the back, overlooking a covered patio and green space. Inside the Dining Hall, the ceiling will be two stories high, and the food serving areas will look into a new and expanded kitchen. — Cory Lancaster

DID YOU KNOW? This fall, Alyssa Morley, a political science major with a minor in history, and Veronica Faison, a double major in communication/media studies and political science with a minor in journalism, will serve as president and vice president, respectively, of Stetson’s Student Government Association. Morley was vice president during 2016-2017 and has been involved in SGA since the second week of her freshman year. Faison, although peripherally involved with SGA for a long time, didn’t become a student senator until 2016. Both will be seniors.




Teaching in Shenzhen, China Gratification, self-discovery and other lessons from grade-schoolers


BY N I C O L E M E L C H I O N DA ’ 16

y family never traveled much, so when I announced that I was going to move across the world to teach English in Shenzhen, China, everyone was astounded — especially those who know how introverted I am.

Another Stetson alumna, Alexa Grohowski ’16, teaches English in Japan, and she told me how great the market is for young American teachers in Asia. I only had to Google “teach English in Asia.” I sifted through all the opportunities and chose what I thought would be the best. After turning 21 and graduating a semester early this winter, I was prepared to start my first grown-up job in a place where, for the first 18


time in my life, I would be a minority with no knowledge of the predominant language. I couldn’t think of anything more terrifying, which is why I had to do it! I can’t take all of the credit for being so daring. I wouldn’t have been able to make this journey without my boyfriend, George Salis ’15, by my side. After he graduated from Stetson, he spent six months teaching in Bulgaria, so he was used to being self-sufficient. I, on the other hand, would have to say goodbye to the best roommates I’ve ever had: my parents. I never wanted to be a teacher. Throughout my childhood and adolescence, every adult I knew told me how great I’d be at teaching. But the thought of becoming the dreaded homework monster repelled me. It wasn’t until I became a teaching assistant for a logic class as a student at Stetson that I realized how fun and rewarding it is helping others learn.

Fear Factor In Shenzhen, I didn’t think I could be so frightened of 8-year-olds. Yet, when I walked into my first class and saw 50 exuberant kids, I panicked. Like most things in life, though, the anticipation was the worst part. As soon as I started my lesson, I felt myself relax. The children had a blast as we danced, sang and played games. What surprised me most was that I was just as giddy as them. And any fear of public speaking magically disappeared. Although I doubted myself during that first day, by the second day I had already developed a reputation. As I walked into the class, I was so moved — and surprised — when the children screamed and danced with excitement. When I signed my contract for this job, I didn’t realize how much better of a person I’d become by earning a smile, a hug or an origami heart. The contract, by the way, is for 11 months. Teachers can earn between $1,300 and $1,600 per month, plus receive a housing stipend and bonuses/airfare compensation. Additional money — actually the real money — comes from tutoring, where teachers can earn $40 per hour for each student. Not a bad start for a first job after graduation in such a competitive market, especially with no prior teaching experience. English-speaking teachers are in high demand. Teachers are able to pick where they live. Air quality was a huge concern of mine, and I have to say I feel really comfortable where George and I live — in a spacious three-bedroom apartment with our shared allowance. Here, the locals are friendly, and the students are eager to learn from a native English speaker. George and I have been treated like celebrities. Whenever a student spots us, both in school and in the city, we are swarmed with warm greetings. My weekly schedule consists of 16 classes with first- through third-graders, while George teaches students in fourth through sixth grade. Although we make our lessons fun, classroom management is definitely the hardest aspect of teaching, since the classes are twice the size of American classrooms. By my second week of teaching, I had received my first evaluation. I expected harsh critiques, given how rambunctious the first-graders were, as well as my inexperience. I remember stiffly approaching a man who held a clipboard full of notes. He hardly criticized me. Instead, he was extremely surprised and impressed by my natural talent, warmth and positive energy. My legs turned to Jell-O. For the first time since arriving at the school, I felt confident and capable. That day I realized every teacher, no matter how experienced or inexperienced, has good and bad days. But the best teachers persevere, not letting hardships spoil the beautiful relationships with their students. Although I have the occasional naughty student, being a teacher has been the most fulfilling thing I’ve ever done. What initially drew me to teaching abroad was the short working hours, long vacations and many opportunities to travel while getting a nice paycheck. Only after meeting my students did I realize the greatest part about this job was them — such bright and loving children.

Although I doubted myself during that first day, by the second day I had already developed a reputation. As I walked into the class, I was so moved — and surprised — when the children screamed and danced with excitement. When I signed my contract for this job, I didn’t realize how much better of a person I’d become by earning a smile, a hug or an origami heart.

"Being a teacher has been the most fulfilling thing I’ve ever done," concludes Nicole Melchionda '16.




Allyson Ward says she stretched her mind in Russia, learning her preconceptions were incorrect.

Gifts of Exploration For students traveling abroad, to see is to learn and to experience is to transform. B Y A M Y G I P S O N


ate Bodger started as many of us do, gaining knowledge of the vastness and richness of the world and its cultures through books and images. A religious studies major, Bodger says that before he went to Greece and Rome over winter break this year, “my knowledge of the Mediterranean world, and indeed the beginnings of what is today Western society, was all textual.” Words now have turned into wonder. “I really had no tactile understanding of the world that the ancient Romans and Greeks lived in,” says Bodger, a junior this fall. “This trip opened my mind and helped me to fathom the lives of the people of the past to whom we owe so much, by affording me the opportunity to see and feel the artifacts of their world.” Bodger’s travel experience was made possible by the David and Leighan Rinker Fund for International Travel. Allyson Ward, a senior this fall, already has visited more than 20 countries on five continents. Among her stops while a student at Stetson was the Saint Petersburg State University of Economics in Russia in 2016. Majoring in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, Ward chose that



location “because Westerners have a tendency to fear and demonize what we do not understand,” she says. Ward gained uncommon insight. “What I found upon my arrival was so starkly different than my preconceptions. I saw beautiful imperial palaces, canals and cafes, just like any other country in Europe,” she describes. “When I went farther east, I saw dachas and communal agriculture and a true sense of the word ‘community.’” While in Russia, Ward explored Moscow, Yekaterinburg and Novgorod, taking the train for two days across the country to the Ural Mountains and hiking for 20 miles in Deer Streams National Park. Also, she attended a Russian ballet at a beautiful, gilded opera house. Her adventure was the result of a Global Awareness Endowment scholarship funded by Stetson trustee Brenda Lopez ’75 and her husband, Jose. The effects of such experiences are deep and lasting, with students quick to share just how much of an impact they have on their lives. Further, those students tend to later become enthusiastic advocates who make it possible for others to journey. Ken Ziesenheim ’74 studied business at Stetson and had a successful career in finan-

cial planning. Although Ziesenheim was born in Germany, it was a trip to Europe through Stetson’s School of Business Administration that “reinvigorated my interest in my homeland.” In 2014, he created the Ken Ziesenheim Endowed Scholarship “to promote and enable students to have a broader experience of the world,” he says. The scholarship helps business students study abroad in Central Europe or enables international students to attend the Stetson business school. His belief: “A well-rounded education involves an international experience.” That experience, in turn, can become transformative. “Through learning about our ancient cultural predecessors, I have learned more about myself,” Bodger affirms, pointing to his awe-inspiring trips to Vesuvius, a city buried in ash in 79 C.E., and his climb to Mars Hill, just below the Parthenon. “This is the very location [where] Socrates had many of his debates, and this is the place where Paul introduced Christianity to the Athenians. “As a lover of philosophy, this location was very special to me, and watching the sunrise all alone from the top of that hill was an almost spiritual experience that I will never forget.”

Sacred Sites and Sounds History resonates as music students tour Europe.


n May 2015, Director of Choral Activities Tim Peter led Stetson music students on a 12-day tour of Germany and London to experience the influences of J.S. Bach and G.F. Handel on sacred music in the early 18th century. They visited 14 villages and cities and 19 churches, attended nine performances and seven evening classes, and performed in 11 locations. The students studied Bach’s compositional style in his early church cantatas and contrasting genre of Handel’s sacred dramatic oratorios through readings, lectures, performances and listening to live concerts. “The daily pace was rigorous, to say the least,” recounted Peter. In May, just prior to press time for this magazine, Peter and another group of students made a return engagement, with both trips courtesy of the Apgar Foundation through the Father LeRoy Lawson Sacred Music Fund. The Apgar Foundation, based in Indianapolis, has three primary charitable missions. Among them are university and college programs that promote an understanding of the Western and American intellectual heritage. While students on this year’s trip were in the midst of their own musical adventures, new graduate Ashley King, a music education major, pointed to inspiration as she left Stetson in May. “Traveling around Germany and London, it was incredible to see just how far the influence of these two composers reached,” King said. “People in towns both small and large revered their names and were able to practically recite their history. ... This experience has inspired me to become a part of the preservation of sacred music and the legacies of its composers. I cannot wait to one day tell my students of this trip, show them pictures and tell them stories.” Likewise, Brianna Samuels graduated in May with much more than a degree in voice performance. Her words: “The trip is and forever will be a beautiful memory of the incredible people that I met at Stetson and the interconnectedness of the seemingly varied, chaotic and wonderful world in which we all live.” The Apgar Foundation, which funds the Great Organists at Stetson series among other endeavors, also underwrote the Sacred Music campus project and residency this spring. The project culminated in a performance of J.S. Bach’s St. John Passion at Lee Chapel.

Tim Peter, Stetson’s director of Choral Activities (middle with glasses), gathers with students on a 2015 trip to Germany and London. Peter returned with new students in May.

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Curator Roberta Smith Favis steps down following the 24th exhibit she has organized for Stetson. B Y L AU R A S T E WA R T


t’s been 23 years since Stetson held its first show of works by Oscar Bluemner, and an even 20 years since Vera Bluemner Kouba, his daughter, left her vast collection of his works to the university and began the process that led to the opening of the Hand Art Center on Stetson’s historic campus in DeLand, Florida, in 2009.

Along the way, Roberta Smith Favis, Ph.D., has cataloged the collection, sifting through the more than 1,000 sketches, paintings, notes and archival materials that form the art center’s core. The former chair of Stetson’s art department drew on that experience to write “Oscar Bluemner: A Daughter’s Legacy” for a 2004 exhibit. Favis also has published her research on Bluemner’s life and work widely, plus presented papers at the College Art Association and other scholarly conferences, and contributed essays to other institutions’ catalogs for Bluemner exhibits. So, you might think that now, as she reviews the fragile works in the secure inner chamber at the heart of the art center’s storage area, selecting the pieces for the exhibit set to open this fall, Favis would work All photos from the Vera Bluemner Kouba Collection, Stetson University, DeLand, Florida



Roberta Smith Favis, Ph.D.

quickly. After all, “Oscar Bluemner: Vision and Revision: Works from the Vera Bluemner Kouba Collection” (Aug. 18-Dec. 8) is the 24th display she has organized for Stetson. But, no. Favis gently opens a shallow metal drawer to find the small watercolors and sketches on the list that she consults and confirms with her student assistant, Abbey

Ramsbottom ’18. Then Favis unfolds an archival glassine packet to reveal a postcardsized black-and-white landscape and its minuscule notations. “‘The red barns stand quite out of plumb’,” Favis says, quoting Bluemner’s jottings. “He’s talking to us,” adds Favis, still delighted after all these years by the artist and his meticulous system. “Look at the values in this charcoal sketch! They’re almost like colors! And this one — ‘at evening, west, with locomotive smoke blue-black and white.’” The curator turns the stacks of archival boxes resting on tall metal shelves in the quiet, cool room. “Where do we want to go now? Let’s go for Box C,” she continues. “I depend a certain amount on serendipity — you’re always finding things. Bluemner said about John Marin [early American Modernist artist] that he ‘floats his colors on while I hammer mine on.’ You can see it here, and in these other works.” Favis looks around the spacious storage room. To one side, racks of paintings stand ready to be slid open, near shelves for threedimensional pieces; one wall holds metal drawers for the works on paper, and the metal shelving is on another. It’s a spare workplace, but one with the state-of-the-art equipment that works on paper demand. There are the usual temperature and humidity controls, but also a sophisticated fire-suppression system — no sprinklers here.

Above: Jersey Silkmills, c. 1916-1917, watercolor on paper, 5 ½ x 8 5/16 in. Bottom right: Paterson Mills, c. 1911, colored pencil on paper, 4 ¾ x 7 ½ in.

Favis has published her research on Bluemner’s life and work widely, plus presented papers at the College Art Association and other scholarly conferences, and contributed essays to other institutions’ catalogs for Bluemner exhibits.



Study for Aspiration (Winfield, New Jersey), 1916, charcoal on paper, 21 x 29 in.

“When we first saw them, they were in envelopes under a sofa, in Vera’s DeLand house,” Favis says about the art.

A NEW HOME The 23-year-leap from that first exhibit, taken from the home where Bluemner’s daughter had moved with her late husband, to Favis’ latest effort — her final one as she steps down after 17 years as curator of the Vera Bluemner Kouba Collection — is the stuff of legend. Works she had kept in her house now are permanently protected in the art center, itself a structure that grew out of Kouba’s gift to Stetson. Even now, Gary Bolding, M.F.A., is impressed with the change. The Stetson art professor was the first to visit Kouba, then in her 90s, in the summer of 1994. He got a call from the university’s development office, saying the artist’s daughter liked Stetson. She had wanted to be a concert pianist; after she and her husband came to DeLand, they enjoyed concerts on campus.



“I knew a little about Bluemner, so I went to her house in a suit — and she didn’t have air conditioning,” Bolding recalls. “The University of Minnesota and a private dealer were talking to her. They were swimming around her like sharks, but she liked us. The works were so neat! It was pretty amazing. “There were the folios under the sofa, in chests of drawers, there were Japanese prints he collected, Cezanne books with his annotations, even a Kaiser’s medal from when Bluemner was an architecture student in Germany. It isn’t really a surprise that Mrs. Kouba’s gift led to the creation of the art center. It is more of a relief.” “Roberta became the hub of the wheel, for sure,” Bolding continues. “We told Mrs. Kouba that if she left the works to Stetson, they wouldn’t end up in a basement; we’d be sure they got a good home, and we have fulfilled our promise. The gift was also an incredible opportunity for Roberta as a scholar, to have this research material, and she’s become a renowned expert on Bluemner.” Serendipity played a large part there, too.

“We told Mrs. Kouba that if she left the works to Stetson, they wouldn’t end up in a basement; we’d be sure they got a good home, and we have fulfilled our promise. The gift was also an incredible opportunity for Roberta as a scholar, to have this research material, and she’s become a renowned expert on Bluemner.” —Gary Bolding, M.F.A., Stetson art professor The art historian earned her degrees from Bryn Mawr (B.A.) and the University of Pennsylvania (M.A., Ph.D.) — with Favis delivering her thesis just before delivering her second child. After she and husband Greg, a doctor, moved in 1979 to his hometown in the Daytona Beach area with their three children, Favis became curator at the Ormond Memorial Art Museum and taught at Daytona Beach Community College (now Daytona State College) and Stetson. She was part time at Stetson, then full time from 1989 until she retired, becoming professor emerita in 2011.

‘REALLY LUCKY’ At Stetson, she taught classes ranging from the Survey of Western Art to Issues in Contemporary Art and Seminar in French Impressionism. She presented her work at conferences, appeared on panels, and wrote catalog essays and scholarly articles on topics ranging from Medieval, Renaissance and Modern art to 19th-century artists who worked in Florida, among them Worthington Whittredge, Thomas Moran and Martin Johnson Heade. “I was really lucky,” Favis says. “At one point, I was interested in Moran, who came to Florida on an assignment for Harper’s or another illustrated magazine. Heade was another serendipitous topic that fell into place. And then there is Bluemner! I was in North Carolina on a National Endowment for the Humanities program when Gary called me about Vera. He was blown away by what he saw. “We went to work, and while Vera was still alive, we gave her a little show of her father’s works, in the cases outside the old gallery in Sampson Hall [on campus]. She was in a wheelchair, and when President Doug Lee spoke, she was in tears.” In 1997, Kouba died. Her estate was settled in 2000, and the work of appraising and cataloging the work began. Favis called the process “stair-step,” and the timing brought more good fortune.

Top: Study for Hackensack River, c. 1916-1917, charcoal on paper, 22 x 30 in. Below: Turnpike, Hackensack River, 1911, colored pencil on paper, 7 3/8 x 11 15/16 in.

“We had been trying to get a climate-controlled space with a small exhibit area on campus,” she explains, “and Homer and Dolly Hand had been looking for a place to endow.” The pace picked up when the federal Collections Assessment Program grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services recommended a professional facility. It opened as the Hand Art Center. Stepping away from Stetson won’t be easy. Favis does have plans, however. “Of course, I’ll miss the interaction with the students and the way I could jump around in various areas of the humanities, and I’ll miss working on the exhibits,” Favis says. “But there are other things I want to do and be. I’m a certified Florida Master Naturalist, and I’m looking forward to my 50th wedding anniversary next year, when we’re thinking of taking the whole family to Ireland.”



LAB RESULTS The final analysis: By virtue of ambition and effort, graduates in the Department of Psychology are raising the bar on scientific — and personal — discovery. BY MARCIA HEATH


n addition to the usual pressures of senior year, Mary Page Leggett and Matthew Vanaman are wrapping up independent research in their respective areas of psychology. It’s just weeks before graduation, and the extra workload is like a second full-time job. Leggett and Vanaman, though, aren’t wilting. They are in bright bloom.

Each is on track not only to graduate, but also to publish graduate-level research in elite professional journals — a rock-star achievement for undergraduates. Acceptance already is in hand, too, from their top graduate school of choice. Indeed, as the school year moved to a close, something special was taking place inside Stetson’s Department of Psychology. And, while these two high achievers were set to depart, they possibly were leaving behind the beginnings of a legacy. “Stetson has always attracted students capable of conducting good senior research,” says Camille Tessitore King, Ph.D., professor and department chair. “But now, many more students are making the commitment to independent research projects.” During the past few years, new faculty with exceptional research records have arrived at Stetson. Standout learners, in turn, have followed suit. “When students see that kind of productivity, they want to jump on board,” King adds. Independent research typically gives students an edge when applying to graduate schools. For Leggett and Vanaman, though, the motivations run deeper. “This research has given us a chance to go through the process of becoming psychologists,” says Leggett. “There are so many facets to what we are learning.” They took vastly different paths to discovering their passions. When Leggett first toured the Stetson campus, not far from her hometown of Winter Park, Florida, she was struck by the contrast of Northern-style brick against the lush tropical green setting. She applied early and was accepted a month later. On the night of her Homecoming dance, while chatting with a friend, she declared her intention to major in psychology. So began her exploration. “At first I didn’t think I’d be remotely interested in the quantitative aspects,” Leggett says. “My mindset flipped when I got more comfortable with psychology’s advanced methods. I saw how science can help solve societal problems no one else is even thinking about.” 26


Mary Page Leggett

Leggett’s independent research delves into the contribution of exercise to self-esteem. Her manuscript has been submitted for publication in the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. The choice of topic reflects her personal interests in mind-body fitness. She’s not only an excellent athlete, but also the energetic co-president of the women’s club soccer team. Vanaman originally applied to Stetson as a gifted percussionist from Lecanto, Florida. His first impression of Stetson was the smell of drywall and fresh paint in his audition room at McMahan Hall; he still gets flashbacks. Vanaman decided to switch majors from music to psychology after undertaking his first independent research project on homelessness, funded by a Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) grant. The centerpiece of the SURE program is an eight-week experience where students work on an individual project under the mentorship of a faculty member. Laura Crysel, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychology, provided his faculty mentorship. Currently, Vanaman’s study on bias among the homeless is under review at the prestigious Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. “That crash course in experiential learning was a biggie for me,” says Vanaman, who studied the individual differences in “moral cognition” — that is, the differences among people in their need to engage with moral issues in their daily lives.

Matthew Vanaman

For Leggett and Vanaman, the study of psychology clearly is heady stuff. Both Leggett and Vanaman credit their faculty mentor, Robert Askew, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychology, for their achievement. Vanaman describes him as a “bottomless well” of theoretical knowledge. And much more. “He was always pushing us to think more deeply and from different perspectives,” Vanaman says. “Rigor and precision in measurement is everything, but Dr. Askew also taught us about the ‘softer’ skills that help you get noticed by graduate schools.” Askew taught his first class at Stetson in August 2015. He arrived with a slew of

Irresistible Attraction Steven Pilato ’17 stands out as a psychology graduate who took every advantage of the research opportunities at Stetson. Starting as a sophomore, Pilato worked with three different faculty members on three distinct research projects: video game violence, body-image dissatisfaction among males and, most recently, the role of the gustatory cortex in taste behaviors. He also secured a $1,500 research grant from Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology, to conduct an ambitious senior-research project, called The Impact of a High Fat Diet During Adolescence on Body Weight, Exercise Behavior and Nucleus Accumben’s Activity in Obese Prone Female Mice. The investment of time, money and research paid off. Pilato applied to six doctoral programs in behavioral neuroscience. He received acceptance to five of them and plans to attend Binghamton University (State University of New York). For Pilato and other enterprising students, research might start as a “tick off the box” exercise for graduate school. But ultimately, it becomes an irresistible attraction of scientific inquiry, with efforts seen in the lab and through presentations at regional and national conferences, according to Camille Tessitore King, Ph.D., professor and chair of Stetson’s Department of Psychology. “For students willing to put in the extra time and effort in the lab, it’s a great time,” King says, also pointing to increased financial support from the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Fund for Student Research at Stetson.

Robert Askew, Ph.D.

public-health research credentials gained at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, among other premier institutions. His office is like a neighborhood hangout, with students dropping in throughout the day. He makes whirs of notations on his whiteboard while encouraging students to think out problems on their own. His enthusiasm is so infectious you get the impression he was destined to teach students, singularly at Stetson, and make science fun and accessible. “Day to day, research can get frustrating,” says Leggett. “But if you keep slogging and get to a breakthrough, you find yourself saying, ‘I actually love doing this.’” This year, for most of the winter break, along with many weekends and countless weekday hours, Leggett and Vanaman happily sequestered themselves in Askew’s office. As peer collaborators, they incubated ideas, tested, refined and sometimes scuffled over the finer points of each other’s projects. Under Askew’s watchful eye, they debated theoretical constructs, thematic content and the precise wording of survey items. Askew stepped in as their Socratic tiebreaker in the rare case of an impasse. “Hashing out ideas is not about winning,” Askew says. “It’s about making the research stronger. I tell my students it’s always better to push back and eventually concede than not push back at all.” Now, the career opportunities for these two students are wide open. This fall, Leggett starts a Master of Science program in Marriage and Family Therapy/ Counseling at Seton Hall University in New Jersey. Vanaman is pursuing a fully funded, five-year doctoral program in Basic and Applied Social Psychology at the City University of New York. Advice? The students, now graduates, have a ready answer in the form of another question: Are you willing to see the research through to the end? Above all, they say, work harder than you think you can, and you’ll realize rewards beyond what you ever expected. They can offer the evidence, too — their research. STETSON


Music Professor Michael Rickman, D.M.A., gives his final performance before retiring, playing with the Stetson Symphony Orchestra in Lee Chapel on campus. He plans to focus on performing and will serve as Professor Emeritus at Stetson. The Dr. Michael L. Rickman Legacy Endowed Scholarship also was created in his honor.

‘The Noblest Calling’ Music Professor and Steinway Artist Michael Rickman retires and becomes Professor Emeritus.





tetson University senior Ryan Kramer played a beautiful rendition of Claude Debussy’s “Pagodes” on the piano as Music Professor Michael Rickman offered gentle words of guidance — keep up the rhythmic energy; work the pedals a bit more.

Rickman, D.M.A., taught Kramer for seven years, ever since he was in 10th grade, a gifted, mostly self-taught pianist who was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism. In May, Kramer graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree and is weighing his options, including graduate school. “I may have not been at Stetson if not for Dr. Rickman,” Kramer says. “If I ever have trouble understanding an assignment, he provided the special attention to help memorize what I needed to learn, not to mention how on the piano he’s helped me shape my performances.” Rickman retired from Stetson in May and was named Professor Emeritus, as well as having a scholarship fund created in his honor. He said working with outstanding students like Kramer was one of the highlights of his 34-year teaching career at Stetson. Yet, he never intended to go into academia, he said shortly before his retirement. “On a very candid and personal note, through my career, I’ve had bouts of thinking I should have never done this. I should have stayed on the road,” Rickman says, with a laugh. “But ultimately, I have realized that to be a teacher is far greater than being just a performer, because you impact the student and then that student will influence and impact the next generation, so you have this ripple, this wake, that doesn’t stop. “To be a teacher, I think, is the noblest calling.” Rickman had been thinking about retirement for the past few years. He wanted to retire now while his “quality of life is superb.” He plans to spend more time with family — two grown children, four grandsons and spouse David Dysart, Ph.D., a former German professor at Stetson who retired in 2016. And he will travel and perform, with concerts already booked next year in California, Denver and Kansas City. “I want to live life even more fully, and I want to continue to play and perform while I’m still at the top of my game,” he says, in his signature soft and gentlemanly tone. Named a Steinway Artist in 2010, Rickman joined a prestigious roster of 1,600 great pianists worldwide, including Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, Lang Lang, Billy

He has built a legacy and tradition of artistry here that has really sustained and driven the school artistically. It is very difficult to replace 34 years of artistry, teaching knowledge and fine collegiality — all of those things that we value so much in a faculty member.” —Thomas Masse, D.M.A., Dean, Stetson School of Music

Joel, Daniel Barenboim and other immortals. Thomas Masse, D.M.A., dean of the Stetson School of Music, notes that Rickman brought a “tradition of excellence” to his teaching and performances. “He has built a legacy and tradition of artistry here that has really sustained and driven the school artistically,” says Masse, who joined Stetson in 2013 from Yale University. “It is very difficult to replace 34 years of artistry, teaching knowledge and fine collegiality — all of those things that we value so much in a faculty member.”

INSPIRING STUDENTS Rickman’s reputation attracted many students to the School of Music over the years, just for the opportunity to work with him, Masse added. Cameron Michael graduated from Stetson in December 2016 with a double major in music and chemistry. He first met Rickman in the summer between his junior and senior years of high school in Jacksonville, Florida. His music teacher had given him a flier for a summer festival in the Italian Alps and encouraged him to apply. Rickman will spend his 11th season this July as an Artist in Residence with the Orfeo Music Festival in Italy, an international event designed to mentor talented young musicians. The festival awarded him tenure last summer, and he intends to keep teaching there. “I got to work with him at the festival over that summer,” Michael recalls. “I really enjoyed his teaching style and, of course,

he’s an amazing pianist. I loved the way he was so relaxed about everything but was still able to push you through everything and get you going.” Before choosing a college, Michael visited every one with a school of music in Florida. He chose Stetson because of Rickman. “He definitely makes known what the melody is when he’s playing,” describes Michael, a collaborative pianist in DeLand who may pursue a career as a forensic chemist at a crime lab. “You can hear what he wants you to hear, and you get the emotions behind what he wants you to feel. “The challenge of the piano, though, is you have to imitate the voice as much as possible and turn the piano into a singing instrument, so you can hear singing, and you have to emulate other instruments,” Michael continues, reciting lessons learned. “You have to have in your mind all the instruments, even though the music is written for piano.” For Rickman, using an instrument to communicate is the artistry of “music-making.” And he brings that philosophy to his own performances. “Being a musician means wearing many hats and, of course, the No. 1 priority is to excel on the instrument, maintaining one’s own artistry, setting the standard for the student, and serving as their role model,” he adds. Rickman, his colleagues contend, has inspired students throughout his 41-year teaching career. His students have gone on to the best graduate programs in the country — Juilliard School, New England Conservatory of Music and Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester, among others — enjoying successful careers of their own. “Michael is constantly working on something new and beautiful, and he’s done that all through his life,” says Mollie Rich, an adjunct professor of voice in Stetson’s School of Music. “He inspires his students to follow suit.”

‘JOHNNY ON THE SPOT’ Rich has known Rickman since he was 16 and growing up in Asheville, North Carolina, recalling “a very talented young man, even then, beautiful pianist, could read anything you put before him.” She and her husband, Robert Rich, Ph.D., taught in the school of music at STETSON


“I may have not been at Stetson if not for Dr. Rickman,” says Ryan Kramer, who graduated in May with a Bachelor of Music degree. For seven years, Rickman taught Kramer, a gifted pianist diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. Photo: Bobby Fishbough

Mars Hill College (now Mars Hill University), outside of Asheville, where Rickman later received his undergraduate degree. “He played a lot in my voice studio for my voice people to give their senior recitals. It was always a joy to work with him because he was never unprepared — never — always good, right there, Johnny on the spot,” Rich remembers. Rickman graduated from Mars Hill in 1972, the same year Rich’s husband joined Stetson’s School of Music as the director of choral activities. She started teaching at Stetson the following year. (They both retired from Stetson in 2002, although she remains an adjunct.) After Mars Hill, Rickman left for the University of North Texas, where he earned a Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts, 30


and began his teaching career. He was at Southeastern Louisiana University in 1983 when Mollie Rich remembers Stetson’s music school dean, Paul Langston, asking her if she knew a piano professor who was “as proficient at solo performance as ensemble playing.” Rich knew the “perfect person.” She called Rickman, but he was happy in Hammond, Louisiana. Eventually, she convinced him to take a look. “After coming over, visiting and meeting some of the professors, I began to realize that both personally and professionally this would be a step up, and I was right!” Rickman recounts. “This was a tremendous move for me. I’ve basically spent my entire career here. “I’ve shared this School of Music and its wonderful programs here with tremendous colleagues, whom I hold in high esteem

and who have spent their entire careers here, as well.” Rickman lists off fellow professors with 25, 33 and 34 years in the School of Music. He was the most senior member of the faculty when he retired, along with Stephen Robinson, D.M. “It has been a positive to share that mutual experience with these fine musicians and people,” Rickman continues. “What I’ll miss the most is collaborating with my colleagues.”

A STEINWAY ARTIST Rickman has played the piano all his life. “I don’t remember a time when I didn’t play,” he says. He was raised in a family of musicians, although he was the first to pursue music as a career. His father also played, while his

grandmother played the organ, and his uncle played trumpet and piano. “Music,” he says, “is in the Rickman DNA.” His father retired after 42 years as a journalist with the newspaper in Asheville. “My father was a great role model in that it was all about work — the work ethic,” says the son. “There was no such thing as downtime. And, of course, that’s the way I’ve been.” Rickman took his first sabbatical at age 50 and asked himself, “OK, is this as good as I’m ever going to be?” He practiced and practiced — and developed back problems — learning “the hard way” not to practice for long stretches. Now, he tells students: For every hour of practice, 10 minutes should be for rest. From the experience, he learned about the Alexander Technique, named for a stage actor who developed voice problems and, when doctors couldn’t help, set out to find the cure himself. Frederick Matthias Alexander discovered that people’s habits of posture and movement can cause unnecessary muscular patterns of tension, and he developed a way in the 1890s to teach people how to release that tension. “The Alexander Technique is what saved my career, by the way, and put me on a new path,” Rickman says. “If you discover a tension in your leg or your back or arm, you must release it. ... We have an Alexander teacher who comes [to the School of Music] twice a semester. The students have the opportunity to take private lessons in body alignment, etc., and in releasing what you don’t need.” At 60, Rickman received his “highest honor” when a representative from famed piano maker Steinway & Sons called and indicated Rickman had been nominated for its prestigious list of Steinway Artists. Rickman was asked to submit his credentials, including concerts and other performance activities. He also was asked to write a testimonial about the Steinway piano. A letter arrived in September 2010, announcing he had made the list. “It’s the highest honor that I could have received. The Steinway brand and product are the crème de la crème,” he says, modestly. He kept two 7-foot Steinway Model B Classic Grand pianos in his corner studio on

I need to do this for myself. I need to pursue this performance route as strongly as I can. ... The passion and ecstasy of music-making go so far beyond the pale of everyday details. It’s my life. It’s my essence. From the beginning, it’s all I ever wanted.” —Michael Rickman, D.M.A.

the second floor of Presser Hall. In his DeLand home, he has a 9-foot Steinway Model D Concert Grand, the same model used at Lee Chapel in Elizabeth Hall during concerts by Stetson’s School of Music.

‘ALL I EVER WANTED’ Before retiring, Rickman gave a final performance in Lee Chapel on April 28, playing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 (Emperor) before a full house with the Stetson Symphony Orchestra and Professor Anthony Hose conducting. Rickman received several standing ovations, and afterward Masse announced Rickman will become a Professor Emeritus at Stetson. The university also will establish the Dr. Michael L. Rickman Legacy Endowed Scholarship in his honor. While Rickman now plans to focus on his career as a performer, he still will offer private lessons to a few outstanding students. “I need to do this for myself. I need to pursue this performance route as strongly as I can,” he explains. He already has concerts booked into next year and will continue to perform with the Daytona Solisti Chamber Orchestra, which recently named him as Artist in Residence. He hopes to travel more and perform. “Now, I’m moving into a time in my life when I do have that flexibility,” he says. “And I want to seize it while, as I say, I’m still at the top of my game.” To prepare for performances, Rickman

aspires to practice about four hours a day — in total, not all at once. “I’m practicing every minute that I don’t have something else to do. … When I had small children, there was less time. And there are times in your life when the details limit your practice. … But I need every moment of practice that I can muster up; these are 66-year-old hands! Not the hands of a 20- or 30-year-old. So, the maintenance itself demands more,” he says. The performances also require intense concentration. “One must remove oneself from the audience and go to meet the music is what I tell the students,” Rickman adds. “It’s a matter of closing out, because in performance, it’s so difficult to sometimes maintain the concentration level that’s needed. The mind goes here. It’s like, oh, did I unplug the iron? Did I do this? Did I do that? So, it’s this constant challenge to keep the mind focused.” His results are “brilliant,” as music critics have said, using words such as “masterful touch” and playing “with both body and soul.” “I think that what’s given me the drive — the D words — the drive, the desire, the discipline, was the need to know all of this wonderful music — chamber music, music with piano and other instruments,” Rickman continues. “I had such an insatiable appetite and desire. ... That has always been there, that need, and I think it’s the Rickman gene that was bequeathed to me from that side of the family.” Rickman calls the works of great composers — ones like Beethoven, Bach, Brahms, Liszt and Schumann — “a gift from the universe” and says he is “so lucky, fortunate, happy to be a part of what keeps their legacy alive.” “The passion and ecstasy of music-making go so far beyond the pale of everyday details,” he concludes. “It’s my life. It’s my essence. From the beginning, it’s all I ever wanted.” Editor’s note: To donate to the Dr. Michael L. Rickman Legacy Endowed Scholarship, mail checks to: Stetson University School of Music, c/o Dr. Michael L. Rickman Legacy Endowed Scholarship, 421 N. Woodland Blvd., Unit 8399, DeLand, FL  32723. For questions, contact Maria Francis in the School of Music at (386) 822-8950 or email




WORLD FELLOWSHIP Stetson values are in motion near and far.


B Y J . A N T H O N Y A B B O T T, P H . D .

hat is global impact? The term literally signifies things coming together with the planet or around the planet. While events of global impact might simply occur, it means something more when we intend to have global impact. The implication is making a difference for the better. Thinking of global impact as an outcome of values, in practice, leads us forward. Our work at Stetson is a special opportunity to foster the practice of global impact, both in the classroom and, more importantly, beyond.



WITH THE PLANET The Environmental Sustainability Fellow Scholarship — a pilot program for the broader emerging initiative of Stetson Values Fellowships — empowers students to engage their passion for environmental responsibility as part of their professional development. Their efforts are numerous. Working with Facilities Management on the renovation of the Carlton Union Building, fellows have provided consultation for waste-minimization technology. When the new CUB dining hall opens in 2018, food-preparation and plate waste will be processed by grinders to minimize bulk and weight. This material, free of plastic and inorganic material, yields a product that may be used in composting or for animal feed. In any case, it will relieve pressure on landfills. Food plays an integral role in how people define their relationship to the planet on a daily basis. All we eat comes from the Earth, and must do so continually, meaning we need a sustainable food system. Stetson, through food forums, has brought together students, staff, faculty and others to think about how we may align our values with our eating. Through reflective research projects, student focus groups articulated what makes food “good,” with the concepts of wellness, social justice and environmental responsibility in mind. The policies and approaches resulting from the forums will bring our values to bear on commodity chains locally and internationally — proverbially putting our money where we want our mouths to be. Hatter Harvest, with help from Hari Pulapaka (associate professor of math and owner/chef of Cress Restaurant, see Page 38) and Patrick Smallen (campus executive chef), exemplified the ideals of the food forum through a fundraising dinner and panel discussion, which featured sustainably sourced foods through a collaboration of staff, faculty, students, local producers and interested patrons. Also during the academic year, fellows worked with the Student Government Association to pass a resolution establishing the Green Fund, a green-development fee for the DeLand campus. Annually, the student body will vote to choose one among

a variety of projects proposed by the environmental fellows in consultation with campus Facilities Management and the Stetson Environmental Working Group. Cost savings from these projects — for example, the energy savings resulting from solar power — are reinvested into the Green Fund to support subsequent projects. Additionally, in alliance with Stetson’s Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience, fellows conducted research supporting the replacement of campus water fountains with filtered, bottle-fill stations, further reducing waste and providing highquality drinking water.

AROUND THE PLANET World Wise is a Stetson initiative linking community engagement, international study and cross-cultural awareness with high-impact learning. A collaboration among the Office of Career and Professional Development, the Center for Community Engagement, the Bonner Program, and W.O.R.L.D.: The David and Leighan Rinker Center for International Learning, among other offices, World Wise deepens faculty, staff and students’ involvement in global intercultural exchange. With the concept of World Wise in mind, the Stetson Mentored Field Experience for 2017 is designed to develop student capacity for international service. Four students, from the School of Business Administration and the College of Arts and Sciences, are supported with scholarships from W.O.R.L.D. to travel with a mentor to Bogota, Cartagena and Barranquilla, Colombia. Participants have been charged to develop a persistent network and knowledge base linking resources available to students through World Wise and Partners of the Americas — a nongovernmental organization supporting Pan-American intercultural exchange. Participants collaborate with Partners affiliates in Colombia through video chat and texting to develop service projects. Their efforts establish the framework for sustained, extramurally supported, student-led alliances with international partners throughout Latin America. Further extending the idea of study abroad, we are connecting communities on an expanding scale. Mobility, combined with

the focused application of values in service, brings people together to affect change. (See Page 36 for more about the Stetson Mentored Field Experience.) Building on our decades-long partnership with the Pädagogische Hochschule Freiburg (a nonprofit university in Germany), we have formalized a process for faculty to do shortand long-term exchanges with colleagues from other foreign universities. Visiting scholars, on either side of the exchange, establish enduring professional relationships with students and colleagues through coursework and research on a global scale. By stretching beyond the parochial, knowing others in the world and engaging in productive work in unusual situations, we better understand ourselves.

BRINGING IT TOGETHER These are just some examples of “glocal” work. The skills and wisdom, instilled through service in communities, travel with participants as they move into the world. To carry the expectation for students, and provide evidence that values are part of professional life, we hope to inspire the same among people they come to know in the future. Each student has an opportunity for global impact, because great lessons echo. When you reach one with something more than information, when you show one how to live, you affect everyone that student will eventually teach by example. You never teach one person. When you do it right, you are teaching the world.

J. Anthony Abbott, Ph.D., is a professor of Environmental Science and Studies at Stetson. Abbott also is Provost Faculty Fellow for International Learning and president of the Florida Colombia Partners of the Americas. STETSON



Role Reversal With a global view, as faculty become better students, they become better teachers. BY MICHAEL CANDELARIA


achel Core, Ph.D., always has been attracted to life in Asia. Her mother was part of the Peace Corps, working in the Philippines during the late 1960s, and Core was introduced to Asian culture at an early age. When Core graduated from Carleton College with a degree in Asian Studies, one of her five-year goals was to be a resident directing a program in China. It kind of happened in two years, with Core getting her first real job as a cruise director on the Yangtze River (Chang River), the longest river in China and the third longest worldwide. Eventually, she did become American program coordinator at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies. At present, Core is an assistant professor in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Public Health. Growing up, Mayhill Fowler, Ph.D., studied ballet in California with a teacher who was from the then-Soviet Union. Their connection piqued an interest that circuitously led Fowler to the study of Russia at Yale University and eventually a Ph.D. in history from Princeton, and a short stint teaching at the Ukrainian Catholic University, among other institutions. Now, Fowler is at Stetson as an assistant professor in the Department of History and director of Stetson’s Program in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (SPREES). Bill Nylen, Ph.D., would have preferred a year off to explore Mexico between high school and the University of California at Berkeley. Instead, Nylen was given a summerexchange experience in Tampico, a port in the southeast part of the state of Tamaulipas,



Rachel Core, Ph.D., Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Public Health

Mexico. There, he discovered his appetite for global knowledge. Counting dissertation work, sabbaticals and Stetson summers, he has spent upward of five years in Brazil. Those trips followed a master’s in Latin American studies and international economics from The Johns Hopkins University, plus a doctorate in comparative politics from Columbia University. At Stetson, he is a professor of political science and chair of the Department of Political Science.

EXPANDING HORIZONS Core, Fowler and Nylen, by virtue of both circumstance and happenstance, became citizens of the world by studying and living across borders. And, as professors at Stetson, they are eager to turn their global adventures into lessons for students in their classroom. The three professors aren’t the only faculty at Stetson who study abroad to expand their own horizons. Not by a long stretch. Also notably, not all faculty view “global” as essential, or other priorities stand in the way of pursuit. These adventuresome professors, however, are emblematic. Essentially, as they become better students, they become better teachers. In turn, with global citizenship stated as a chief mission at Stetson, their efforts are “powerful.”

Mayhill Fowler, Ph.D., Department of History

That was the word used by Rosalie Richards, Ph.D., associate provost for faculty development, Office of Academic Affairs, and a professor of chemistry and education. Richards also helped to establish Stetson’s Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence. Richards has two other words to describe such efforts: faculty development. “When our teachers have the opportunity to alter their own worldview as a result of engaging with perspectives different from their own, this is a powerful testimony of what is possible by their students,” Richards says. By definition, she explains, universities and colleges are created to be houses of

learning, and learning is about how one embraces multiple perspectives to settle on a position. “Within this context,” Richards comments, “the term ‘global perspective’ is huge because it takes into account a myriad of understandings such as interdependence and globalization; identity and cultural diversity; social justice and human rights; peace-building and conflict resolution; and sustaining our futures. Consequently, presenting global perspectives as a university and as a faculty is a critical element of our work, irrespective of discipline.”

HIGHEST-PRIORITY STRATEGY Richards points to a recently outlined U.S. Department of Education global learning strategy. It serves as a framework for global competence, with resources allocated to make global learning a highest-priority strategy. “This global learning strategy is an integrated approach that reflects a deliberate shift from insular learning to a systematic international engagement across the curriculum. And for the first time in the history of our country, students completing K-12 education will enter our colleges and universities with a higher level of preparedness and sophistication for the globalized world than we have experienced before, as well as more natural engagement with communities different from their own,” Richards says, adding that with mobile technologies, this already is happening.

Bill Nylen, Ph.D., Department of Political Science

“When our teachers have the opportunity to alter their own worldview as a result of engaging with perspectives different from their own, this is a powerful testimony of what is possible by their students.” — Rosalie Richards, Ph.D., associate provost for faculty development, Office of Academic Affairs Core, a medical sociologist, speaks, reads and writes Mandarin and has spent seven years in China, including 18 months conducting research for her dissertation, “The Fall and Rise of Tuberculosis: How institutional change affected health outcomes in Shanghai, 1927-2013,” which was supported by a Fulbright Fellowship. She currently is working on a book manuscript based on her dissertation. She has a master’s in development studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and a doctorate from The Johns Hopkins University. At Stetson, she teaches such courses as Population, Society and Environment, and Medicine and Health in Society.

GLOBAL RESOURCES Like other faculty at Stetson, new involvement in ASIANetwork, coupled with continued participation in the New York University Faculty Resource Network, has helped to further expand Core’s scope. ASIANetwork is a consortium of 170-plus North American colleges that strives to strengthen the role of Asian Studies in liberal arts education. The Faculty Resource Network is a 55-member global partnership dedicated to bolstering faculty development and increasing student academic success. Stetson is an active participant in each organization. In January, before the spring semester began, Core attended a Faculty Resource Network seminar in Athens, Greece, where she studied global climate change. “It allowed me to essentially be a student for a week and take a class on something that was related to one of the classes I teach,” says Core. “Faculty development is important because it can really invigorate your courses and give you perspectives on issues that you

hadn’t thought about how to incorporate into your course.” Fowler teaches and researches the cultural history of Russia, Ukraine and Eastern Europe. Her book published in May, “Beau Monde at Empire’s Edge: State and Stage in Soviet Ukraine” (University of Toronto Press), provides insight to explain the creation of the Soviet cultural periphery through the story of the rise and fall of a milieu of artists and officials in the 1920s and 1930s. In the classroom, there are a few personal stories to share with students, too. Ask Fowler about going across the border from Ukraine to Romania with a colleague to see painted churches — and her adventure returning by foot late at night across the border. “Students love the stories,” says Fowler, who speaks Russian, Ukrainian, Polish, French, German and some Yiddish. For several years after college, she was a stage actor. Yet, she refuses to “fake teaching.” “I can’t do my job without going abroad. … We’re not just classroom professors; we’re scholars,” asserts Fowler, who in June was headed back to Ukraine to, among other activities, begin new research. Nylen’s most recent research abroad was to Mozambique in 2013 as a Fulbright Fellow. He spent nearly nine months conducting research, with half the time also spent teaching at the Eduardo Mondlane University, the country’s oldest and largest university. “You have all kinds of little stories to tell to make things interesting,” Nylen affirms. “I also feel that I can speak with authority when I’m talking about Africa without hoodwinking my students; I actually know something about the place.”




Face to Face The Mentored Field Experience teaches Stetson students about the world, one real lesson at a time. BY RAY WEISS


lexis Guyton ’17 heard all of the debate nationally about building a wall on the border of Mexico. The talk of drug runners and criminals flowing illegally into the United States. The fears. The concerns. Then in summer 2016, Guyton, who arrived at Stetson from nearby Jacksonville, visited Mexico as part of the Mentored Field Experience (MFE), a program sponsored by the university’s Latin American Studies Program. There, all stereotypes and preconceived notions of America’s southern neighbor vanished. During the 10-day trip, she and two other Stetson students, plus a professor, visited Mexico City, the bustling capital city with 21 million residents in and surrounding it. They also saw the country’s ancient pyramids, collected data for their research projects and spent time with young children at an after-school program/orphanage in the rural city of Guanajuato, playing games, helping with homework and singing songs before spending several nights with a host family. “In my mind, before I went, I pictured dirt roads. And people asked me if I was going to Cancun,” Guyton said, referring to the popular Mexican vacation spot. “I was nervous and excited. I’d heard all the bad things about drug cartels and violence. But I didn’t see one bad thing. The people were so friendly. I found a country that was very rich culturally. They are just like us. People.” In turn, Guyton, newly graduated as an education major, plans to carry forward lessons learned as she teaches others. “I think I have a better worldview on how different cultures work, and how difficult it is for people from other countries living here [in the United States] to 36


Tour guide Adrian Salazar Rosales poses with Stetson students Alexis Guyton, Christine Chase and Sara Booth Vazquez, along with Guanajuato historian Alma Montes, on their Mentored Field Experience to Mexico in May 2016. 

adapt. I empathize with the challenges that foreigners face in America,” added Guyton, who was active in Stetson’s chapter of The Alexander Hamilton Society, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to promoting constructive debate on basic principles and contemporary issues in foreign, economic and national security policy. Her MFE research project analyzed the experiences Mexican children have in American elementary schools and offered innovative suggestions for improving their education in the United States. The MFE began at Stetson in 1995, fully funded by alumnus Mark Hollis ’56, a former trustee. The program covers the expenses of three or four students each summer on professor-led trips to South America, Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean. Over the years, MFE students, selected after a competitive interview and evaluation process, have traveled to Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Ecuador, Guatemala, Peru, Puerto Rico and Uruguay. Before visiting a country, the students spend the spring semester in the classroom, preparing for the trip by learning the history, politics and culture of the nation, as well as submitting a research proposal. During the trip, the students collect data for those projects, culminating with a fall-semester, post-travel evaluation course and presentation of their research at Stetson. This summer, students in the program are visiting Colombia. (See Page 32.) Nicole Mottier, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Department of History, led the summer 2016 trip to Mexico. “We choose as many students as we can afford. We prepare them intellectually for the country,” said Mottier, who teaches courses on colonial and modern Latin American histories and also is developing courses on the histories of global capitalism and on the history of drug cartels in the Americas. “I taught them about the history, economics and cultures of Mexico. I chose some students who had never been out of the country before. In the Mentored Field Experience, we try integrating their in-country experience with the foundation they received in the first part of the course. Being in another country broadens their worldview, and working on their research hones their analytical skills.”

Mottier also is publishing on the political and social histories of peasant loans in 20th-century Mexico and is beginning a monograph that analyzes the history of organized crime in Mexico over 100 years.

LAND OF LEARNING Maybe nothing was more significant in expanding the MFE students’ worldview than the group’s visit to the ancient pyramids of Teotihuacan, the City of the Gods, founded in the final two centuries B.C. The name comes from the Aztecs, who visited the city centuries after it was abandoned. The larger of the pyramids predates all of the Mayan structures by several hundred years. It mimics the shape of the surrounding mountains and contains several tombs. Besides learning about Mexican history by visiting the pyramids, the students learned about Mexico’s informal economy by riding boats through the floating gardens of Xochimilco while being entertained by a mariachi band. They tasted Mexico’s sophisticated cuisine by eating food prepared in the culinary styles of the ancient Aztecs and Mayans. And they saw the importance of Catholicism in Mexico by visiting historic churches, including the famous Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The old Roman Catholic church and a more modern national shrine stand near a hill where in 1531 the vision of the Virgin Mary is believed to have appeared before Saint Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin, an Aztec convert to Catholicism. According to the story told by locals, Saint Juan Diego was walking between his village and Mexico City when Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared and told him to build a church at that site. Today, it is one of the most important pilgrimage sites for Catholics, visited by millions of people annually. The land, as well as the residents, spoke to the students. “It was a fun way to turn abstract concepts into concrete knowledge,” Mottier continued her explanation. “It opened their eyes to understand Mexico in a more nuanced way. I couldn’t have asked for better students. They threw themselves into their research and the experience.” Christine Chase, who graduated in May with a finance degree and a minor in Spanish, had applied for the MFE her first couple of years at Stetson before being selected. She was a member of the Stetson Honors Program, Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society and Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society and a former president of Alpha Kappa Psi. The Mexico trip was her first time outside the United States. Her MFE research project analyzed lucha libre (Mexican wrestling) from historical and contemporary

Elementary Lessons About the World “I really enjoyed learning how to pronounce words in Dutch and how Venezuela has the world’s tallest waterfall.” Those were the words of Larisa, then a fourth-grader at DeBary Elementary School, who in February attended the third annual W.O.R.LD. Fair, hosted by Stetson’s W.O.R.LD.: The David and Leighan Rinker Center for International Learning. More than 300 elementary students, teachers and parents filled the Hollis Center on the DeLand campus, receiving an opportunity to learn about 25 countries that were represented through Stetson students, groups, programs and academic study. The visitors sampled foods, learned new and interesting dialects, and played games. Participation from the nearby elementary schools doubled from the 2016 event. The young students didn’t have to travel far, but they did get to explore. At the end, they placed beans in the jars of their favorite countries and identified what “stuck” with them. “I’m glad that my students were able to learn to about these opportunities at such a young age,” commented a fourth-grade teacher from Pride Elementary School in Deltona. “Hopefully, when they go to college, they’ll want to study abroad.”

perspectives and suggested new ways of understanding lucha libre both culturally and politically. “My expectations were that I was going to broaden my horizons. We live in a bubble here. I wanted to get a glimpse at how other people live and what they value. The best way to get to know how to use a language is to be immersed in it. Being with the people is the best,” said Chase, adding she was at ease in Mexico, even in Mexico City, the world’s third-largest city. Her highlight of the trip was climbing to the top of one of the pyramids, where she could look out and reflect within, both about her own life and those who came before her. Broadened horizons, indeed, far from the classroom. “The trip was eye-opening for me, especially seeing the poverty,” Chase concluded. “I realize what a blessed life I have in this country. But I took back with me a little piece of how others live.” STETSON



Savory Achievement Associate Professor of Math Hari Pulapaka, Ph.D., mixes part classroom and part kitchen into his secret sauce filled with zest. The results add up nicely.



ari Pulapaka, Ph.D., could focus only on his very busy life as an associate professor of math at Stetson and accomplished chef at Cress, his restaurant in downtown DeLand, Florida.

No one would blame him. But actions by President Donald Trump took the Mumbai, India, native out of his comfort zone. Pulapaka refused to sit back and watch as the new administration banned Muslim travel from seven countries with an executive order that was challenged in federal court. So, within three weeks, Pulapaka organized a fundraiser to help Syrian refugees displaced by civil war in the best way he knew: preparing a special “7 Courses, 7 Countries” dinner that featured dishes from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan. In late February, more than 300 people paid $40 each and sat at tables along Indiana Avenue in DeLand, sampling Middle Eastern cuisine that included camel-duck kebab, split pea and cici hummu, and lamb maraq. More than $10,000 was raised to aid refugees in Syria and other countries through the International Rescue Committee, which benefited more than 26 million people in 2016, according to its website ( Pulapaka, a green card holder (permanent resident) of the United States with Indian citizenship, considers himself “a citizen of the world,” a philosophy rooted in his personal experiences as a working-class immigrant, college professor, and child of parents who stressed integrity and empathy. His mother, now in her mid-80s, was a lifelong science and math teacher, and his deceased father worked as an airline flight scheduler for pilots. “My father was very intellectual. He read the newspaper and listened to the BBC,” Pulapaka recalled. “He read a lot, but kept his ideas to himself. My mother expressed more about right and wrong. That consciousness, for me, came from her.” Travels within India, where he received his bachelor’s degree (University of Mumbai), and in the United States, where he obtained his master’s and doctoral degrees (George Mason University and the University of Florida, respectively), expanded his vistas and made him open-minded. “I have always been on the side of the underdog,” Pulapaka said. “I speak up if I feel something is unjust or inhumane.”



Full Menu Following the big charity dinner, Pulapaka returned to a more familiar schedule in the classroom and in the kitchen, creating dishes that have made him one of the most acclaimed chefs in Florida. His impressive accomplishments include being named a James Beard Award semifinalist four times since 2011 for Best Chef South, and Food & Wine magazine named him People’s Best Chef in 2012 and 2013. This spring, he was named to the 2017 Grist 50 list for his work on sustainable food and food-waste solutions. Grist is a nonprofit media organization that has specialized in environmental reporting since 1999. Notably, growing up in a household with four siblings, not much food was thrown away — “just banana peels and the occasional potato skin.” In the past four years at Cress, approximately 16,000 pounds of food waste has been saved, Pulapaka estimates. Each week, a local farmer picks up restaurant scraps for pig and chicken feed, as well as compost. That same farmer sells produce at the local farmers market, with the vegetables grown in Pulapaka’s compost. Pulapaka also recycles cooking oil and uses every part of his vegetables and fish. For good measure, Pulapaka is an author, too. “Dreaming in Spice” was published in 2015; “Sinfully Vegetarian” is expected to be published later this year.

Hari Pulapaka made the 2017 Grist 50 list for his work on sustainable food, which is showcased at Cress, his restaurant in DeLand, near the Stetson campus.

“It’s challenging to say the least,” Pulapaka said of his dual-career workload, a trait he shares with wife Jenneffer, who is a surgeon and doubles as sommelier at Cress. “There is a routine like teaching. No two dishes or days are the same, just like no two customers or students are the same.” He shops and buys his own produce, mostly from local farms, and prepares and cooks the meals himself at the restaurant, which is open for dinner Thursday through Saturday. Cress will transition to an eventsonly format beginning Aug. 29, the day before its 10th anniversary. “Why did I do it? Three words: professional midlife crisis. It was my first and will be my only restaurant. It wasn’t difficult to do. I just needed to be sure I had enough sense to know what I was getting into,” Pulapaka said with a grin, seated at a table in the small, simply furnished dining room, before heading back to the kitchen to prepare the night’s fare that included duck, rice and creme brulee for dessert. Pulapaka just completed his 17th year in Stetson’s Department of Mathematics, teaching a number of courses. He encourages his students, freshmen through seniors, to focus on creative ways to reach a solution to a problem, rather than seek and memorize a single process.

He sees similar, creative parallels in his two careers. “Both require a lot of attention to detail. You can mix in several ways to come to a solution in math or in food,” he explained. “I cook by feel and tasting. Math also has a lot of feel. It’s not black and white.” Tom Vogel, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of Mathematics and Computer Science, agrees. “I do not think mathematics and culinary interests are in any way odd overlapping interests,” Vogel said. “Cooking and food preparation has always been a hobby of mine. In fact, in 2007 when I interviewed for my position, I fondly remember my interview meeting with Hari. We met at a local coffeehouse and the conversation quickly turned to our passion for food.” Vogel called Pulapaka “our resident number theorist” and added, “to be honest, I do not see Hari as a chef when he is in the department.” Pulapaka’s dishes often have Indian and French influences. Although he has no signature meal, he is best known for his inventive seafood preparations. “My food tends to have bold flavors. I have a French cooking degree. My style incorporates classical techniques with progressive flavors ... seasonally bold food,” Pulapaka noted.

In addition to his culinary and teaching duties in DeLand, Pulapaka is affiliated with the MIND Research Institute’s Taste of Math program in Irvine, California. He recently visited for the second time in a year to help establish ways to use food to improve students’ mathematical thinking. “To get out of the box and rely on intuitional thinking in math,” he said. “That’s what we do with food.” Also, Pulapaka is in the “candidate pool” to become a certified master chef through the American Culinary Federation. There is a secret personal ingredient: relentlessness. As he gets older, though, Pulapaka is becoming well-aware of how his two careers tax both the mind and body. The change in the restaurant’s format does bring some rest, but he isn’t sure how many years he will be able to continue as math professor and chef. “Teaching is tough, and teaching math is even tougher,” he said. “It is harder than cooking for me. But I enjoy both in different ways. I don’t know. Eventually, I have to face the music. My body is getting tired. My mind is still strong. Something will have to give. I’m not sure which.” His style, meanwhile, remains equally artful and articulate. His impact, quite calculable. STETSON



Undercover Education A former Colombian judge offers all-too-real-world lessons to her students. BY JACK ROTH

Professor Luz Nagle brings stories of survival and triumph to Stetson's College of Law.




fter multiple attempts on her life, Luz Nagle knew it was time to get out of Colombia. In the 1980s, being a judge in Colombia was one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. If you weren’t willing to accept bribes and turn the other cheek when it came to the drug cartels, you were as good as dead, Nagle describes. Cartel hit men, known as sicarios, lurked everywhere, waiting for orders from their drug lords to kill anyone who got in their way. Many, perhaps most, officials acquiesced and accepted generous bribes, enabling the bad guys to turn the country into a cocainefilled combat zone, Nagle continues. “People I knew started turning up dead,” remembers Nagle, professor at Stetson University College of Law. “Back then, Colombia had an inquisitorial judicial system, which meant judges were involved in gathering evidence and working with the police. This made judges even more vulnerable to the cartels.” Nagle, born in Medellin, graduated with honors from the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana School of Law and Political Science in 1981. From 1983 to 1986, she sat as district judge of Sabaneta (a suburb of Medellin) and presided over civil and criminal cases, arbitrated labor disputes, directed judicial investigations, and coordinated police enforcement and drug interdiction operations. Naturally, her professional interests did not align with the drug lords’, who worked to turn the country’s political system into a place of corrupt judges, lawyers, law enforcement officials and businesspeople. Nagle remembers a man coming into her office and placing a briefcase full of money on her desk. She also was offered expensive cars and trips. As a judge, it would have been easy to be part of the game, but she didn’t accept. That is when the attempts on her life began. And since the police force was compromised by the cartels, she says, there was no protection. “A colleague and I were walking down the street one day when a man walked up and shot her in the head,” Nagle recounts. “He ran. She died immediately. I was the intended target.” In a second incident, after Nagle refused a bribe from an unknown man, another

stranger walked into her office. When he attempted to shoot Nagle, his gun got caught in his leather holster, giving Nagle time to grab her .38 (standard issue for all judges), dive onto the floor and shoot the assailant in the leg. He fled in a BMW, which was waiting for him on the street below. Another time, a hit man driving a taxi rammed her car and put her in the hospital.

A NEW BEGINNING Nagle, shaken, knew it was only a matter of time before one of the sicarios succeeded in his task. She began making plans to escape to California with her fiancé. Nagle told her superiors, who were all on the cartel’s payroll, she notes, that she was getting married and would return to work after her honeymoon. A few days later, a small bomb exploded in her office, but Nagle already was on her way to the United States. “I had to start over,” says Nagle, who didn’t speak English and couldn’t apply her law background in the States. “I cleaned offices and toilets. I painted houses with my husband. There were times we didn’t have money for a head of lettuce, but we didn’t want help from anyone. We were happy to be out of Colombia and safe.” After becoming fluent in English, she took the Graduate Record Examination and applied to UCLA School of Law. There, she received a Master of Laws in 1991 and a Master of Arts in Latin American Studies in 1992. Nagle was offered a scholarship to get her doctorate in history, but decided instead to attend The College of William and Mary School of Law, where she received her Juris Doctor in 1995. “I was conflicted for a while,” she concedes. “I told my husband I hated lawyers. I didn’t believe in them or the legal profession. In Colombia, they sold out my country to this chaotic situation. I lost faith in the legal system, but I thought if it was different in the United States, maybe I could be a bridge between the two systems and provide understanding.” Nagle worked as a law clerk for the Supreme Court of Virginia and as an anti-piracy specialist for Microsoft Corp., where, ironically, she again found herself dealing with organized crime in Colombia. Looking to see if software was being pirated, she discovered it was being used by drug lords to launder money.

Nagle started as a professor at Stetson in 1998. Today, she focuses on international law, international business law, terrorism and global security, and human trafficking. Also, she does work for the U.S. State Department, conducting human rights training for the military in Colombia. “I decided I couldn’t be afraid to go back there anymore,” says Nagle, who always is picked up at the airport there in a bulletproof car. “Colombia is working hard to establish a military justice system, so they need someone to teach them about international humanitarian law.” Nagle brings a unique perspective to her classroom, and her firsthand knowledge of how corruption destroys institutions reminds students why it’s important to remain true to their profession.

“If we’re lawyers, we take an oath to respect the Constitution, laws and justice. If we tilt to the other side, we’re betraying what we swore to do.” -Stetson Law Professor Luz Nagle She explains: “I try to tell my students there may be a time when someone is going to ask you to do the wrong thing, and it might be the safer thing, but can you look in the mirror and see the same person? Can you live with yourself in fear that maybe someone will someday know what you did? Can you have children and tell them to do the right thing when you know the secret you’re keeping? If we’re lawyers, we take an oath to respect the Constitution, laws and justice. If we tilt to the other side, we’re betraying what we swore to do.” Also, she cautions her students that corruption is about people, not institutions. “It’s not about the system; it’s about the individuals within the system,” Nagle says. “If we don’t fix the people, it doesn’t matter what system we have in place. When the rule of law isn’t respected anymore, you have chaos on your hands.” STETSON



Safeguarding Planet Earth

Royal “Roy” Gardner, founder/director of Stetson’s Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy and a Stetson professor of law, is in a familiar place: head of the class.

The College of Law’s commitment to the environment stretches across the world. For evidence, look to the professor who has taken the lead. B Y F R A N K K L I M


t was the last Tuesday in March. With only a few days before Stetson’s annual International Environmental Moot Court Competition, law students from around the world were streaming to Stetson’s Gulfport, Florida, campus. Stetson University College of Law was welcoming students from 18 countries. The event’s theme: climate geo-engineering and its potential effects on the oceans. The international competition, in its 21st year, has become a benchmark of success for law students across the globe. Teams of law students face intense regional competition to earn the opportunity to compete in the final rounds at Stetson. Most participants are visiting the United States for the first time. Just making it to the competition is a high-water mark for these future lawyers. Whatever their standing at the end, they will be hailed back home as champions. As it turned out, a team of students from Gujarat National Law University in Gandhinagar, India, won the competition, with the runner-up coming from the University of the Philippines College of Law.



Stetson was in the global spotlight, again. And the three-day event represented a characteristic Royal “Roy” Gardner moment. The International Environmental Moot Court Competition is one of many initiatives sponsored by Stetson’s Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy, established in 2005. The institute serves as an interdisciplinary focal point for education, research and service activities aimed at protecting the environment. In 2016, it received the American Bar Association’s Distinguished Achievement Award in Environmental Law and Policy. Much of the success can be attributed to Gardner, the institute’s founder/director and a Stetson professor of law. Gardner’s standing as a worldwide wetlands expert has been the foundation for the institute’s work. If Gardner, who arrived in Gulfport in 1994, hasn’t made Stetson Law a household name in environmental stewardship, he’s come pretty close. Most notably, Gardner is in his second three-year term as chair of the Scientific and Technical Review Panel of the Ramsar Convention, also called the Convention on Wetlands, an intergovernmental treaty established in 1971 that provides the framework for worldwide conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. Ramsar Convention activities are headquartered in Gland, Switzerland.

Additionally, in 1999 Gardner was appointed to the National Research Council’s Committee on Mitigating Wetland Losses. In 2006, he won the National Wetlands Award for Education and Outreach. Partly due to his Ramsar work, Gardner has been asked to provide environmental expertise on five continents, with recent presentations in Cameroon, Canada, China, India, Mexico, Portugal, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Uruguay. His environmental work, meanwhile, has placed him in some unusual circumstances — from meeting with North Korean officials in China about wetland issues (potentially tense) to guarding a nesting leatherback sea turtle in the middle of the night on a deserted beach in Mexico (heartwarming). Also, Gardner is author of the book “Lawyers, Swamps, and Money: U.S. Wetland Law, Policy, and Politics.” Years ago, he worked in the Army General Counsel’s office in the Pentagon, where he dealt with legal issues that included the protection of the northern spotted owl and the administration of the Panama Canal Commission. And he served as the Department of the Army’s principal wetlands attorney. His passion for the environment first surfaced early. In the third grade, he won first place in a conservation club essay contest, “Man’s use and abuse of his environment.”

Whether it’s with students and sea turtle eggs or in a more formal setting, Gardner displays passion for environmental stewardship.

ASCENDING INFLUENCE In turn, Gardner’s international connections continue to benefit Stetson. This spring, in response to an executive order by President Donald Trump targeting the Clean Water Rule, seven scientific organizations issued a joint letter in support of protecting the nation’s aquatic resources. The March letter endorsed a January brief filed by Gardner and Stetson Foreman Biodiversity Fellow Erin Okuno on behalf of water and wetland scientists in support of the Clean Water Rule. Kirsten Work, Ph.D., a biology professor, and Benjamin Tanner, Ph.D., an assistant professor of environmental science and studies, both from Stetson’s DeLand campus, were among the scientists for whom the brief was filed in the 6th Circuit (Pasco and Pinellas counties in Florida). Essentially, Stetson Law was praised. In their letter, the Society of Wetland Scientists, Ecological Society of America, American Institute of Biological Scientists, American Fisheries Society, Society for Ecological Restoration, Society for Freshwater Science and the Phycological Society of America emphasized the brief’s “use of sound science to explain the urgent need for the Clean Water Rule.” Further, through Stetson’s Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy’s Edward and Bonnie Foreman Biodiversity Lecture Series, established by trustee and overseer Bonnie Foreman, internationally renowned environmental activists and scholars have traveled to Gulfport. On March 30, the Foreman Biodiversity Lecture featured Judge Anthony Lucky of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea and former Supreme Court Justice of Trinidad and Tobago. Lucky also served as a final-round judge for the International Environmental Moot Court Competition. Stetson Law students contribute to worldwide environmental efforts, as well. They were instrumental in the designation of the Audubon Society’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary in Naples, Florida, as a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention.

Students compiled needed information for the application, which the U.S. government submitted to the Ramsar Secretariat in Switzerland. Their work was recognized at the designation ceremony. Similar engagement was evident in fall 2016, as Stetson Law students joined graduate environmental science students in learning about sea turtles. Gardner had long wanted to present interdisciplinary instruction on legal and policy issues related to sea turtles. With financial support from the Sea Turtle Grants Program, in August 2016 he offered the course, which included a site visit to observe an excavation of a recently hatched nest. “He thinks of creative ways to bring different groups and people together to work on environmental projects and initiatives that make a real difference in the world,” comments Okuno, who as a biodiversity fellow assists with the institute’s education, research and service activities. For the record, Okuno, a 2013 Stetson Law graduate who received the Edward D. Foreman Most Distinguished Student Award, calls Gardner a rock star, as do others around him. Offering amusing proof, Okuno points to his performance during a musical skit with Professor Lance Long and three students at Stetson Law’s Earth Day celebration on campus in April. Gardner, appropriately, was the lead singer. STETSON



Seeds of Knowledge

Former soccer star Timothy Oyebode Olagbemiro continues to achieve in homeland Nigeria. B Y A N D Y B U T C H E R


be [one] of those that help to contribute my hrough almost four decades as an educator in his native Nigeria, Timothy Oyebode Olagbemiro ’71 has seen many students ascend to positions of influence in business knowledge globally.” Not that his road to achievement was and government. Even in the often-infertile lands of his country, it is a harvest without potholes. Homesick and lonely arriving grown from seeds planted during his years at Stetson. in the United States at 18, Olagbemiro strug“Whatever I have achieved, I owe it to Stetson University, students and staff,” asserts gled at first, finding himself with two D’s and Olagbemiro, recipient of a 2007 Distinguished Alumni Award and a Stetson Athletics Hall on probation at one stage. Yet, that setback, of Famer. together with the encouragement received from Still exhibiting the drive to excel that resulted in a Hatters career goal-scoring record (56 those who believed in him, eventually spurred from 1968 to 1971), Olagbemiro has since 2014 been the pioneer president at Edwin Clark him on to the Dean’s List at Stetson. University in Kiagbodo, Delta State, Nigeria. Previously, he led Bowen University in Iwo, Following graduation, Olagbemiro went to Osun State, Nigeria, to tenfold student population growth during his decade-long tenure as Fisk and Howard universities for a master’s in vice chancellor (president). Bowen was the first, and is the largest, Baptist university in Africa. chemistry and doctorate in organic chemistry Essentially, Olagbemiro — or The Big O, as he was known during his Stetson playing days before working as a research chemist in New — has replaced one success for another, year after year, with a single common component: York, where he synthesized compounds that education. were patented as anti-tuberculosis and “One vital way you develop a country is through its educational programs,” he says, simply. antipsychotic agents. Olagbemiro’s sights, however, always have extended broader, even beyond his African Returning to Nigeria in 1978, he was homeland. “Advances in science and technology over the years have transformed the entire world from appointed one of the country’s youngest-ever full professors of chemistry within six years, small entities and enclaves into a global village,” he says. “Knowledge is power, and I want to



“Advances in science and technology over the years have transformed the entire world from small entities and enclaves into a global village. Knowledge is power, and I want to be [one] of those that help to contribute my knowledge globally.” Timothy Oyebode Olagbemiro ’71

Top left: Olagbemiro was a goal-scoring star for the Hatters from 1968 to 1971. Olagbemiro stands with his wife of 44 years, Florence. He was instrumental in building the world’s largest university chapel, located at Bowen University. Above: Olagbemiro wears an academic ceremonial gown as president of Edwin Clark University.

receiving several international research grants and awards and being published widely in international science journals.

Hatter Heritage In his leadership roles, Olagbemiro says he’s extended the same kind of personal care he received at Stetson to his own students. That includes ensuring each student had his phone number and sometimes eating in the student cafeteria. While at Bowen, he also took his place alongside students in the university’s 450-strong choir. Not coincidentally, student enrollment at Bowen bloomed. Such accessibility “helps enhance openness,” he notes, “while allowing the students to feel wanted and seen as a future leader … . Stetson cared for me, and I am passing on the legacy wherever I have the opportunity to lead. “Making [students] know they are our future leaders is crucial.” With a keen memory and a deep appreciation, Olagbemiro credits everyone from presidents and faculty to storekeepers and

grounds people for instilling in him a potent blend of academic curiosity, commitment to hard work and concern for others. He refers to then-Stetson President Paul F. Geren, Ph.D., as “a receptive father, an astute administrator and a visionary leader who was ahead of his time.” He describes George Borders, Ph.D., dean of Student Affairs and his soccer coach, as “the elder brother I never had … my benefactor and a generous man.” He points to Kathleen Allen Johnson, M.A., as the teacher who instilled in him a lifelong love of classical music. (Johnson was the 1976 winner of the McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching.) Also, he fondly recounts those who led the weekly interdenominational chapel services. Stetson’s annual Christmas concert was a particular favorite, an event he replicated at both Bowen and Edwin Clark universities. Olagbemiro looks back on his Stetson days as the time he “learned to steer the wheel of excellence and hard work” — a

two-handed ethos he continues to share with students to this day. A man of both faith and science, who built the world’s largest university chapel while at Bowen, he views his personal belief system as being intertwined with his academic life. “I have been motivated by the faith I have in God, and the confidence in my ability and striving for excellence developed through the confidence reposed in me at Stetson,” says Olagbemiro, who has been married for 44 years, with five children and five grandchildren. “This gave me the leap to believe in myself, just as the Apostle Paul said, ‘I can do all things, through Christ who strengthens me.’” Seeing students develop integrity, transparency, honesty and sincerity of purpose, just as he had at Stetson, lifts his world. “It gives me great joy that Nigeria’s future is bright,” Olagbemiro says. “When I see the joy in their faces as they graduate in character and learning, I have hope for Nigeria and Nigerians.” STETSON



‘Not Just One Way’ From Iceland to Stetson and back, Sonja Scott teaches lessons about looking at the world.


onja Scott ’17 (EMBA) believes so strongly in the concept of a global workplace that the human-resource specialist put it into practice far away from her successful career and her home. Two years ago, Scott left Iceland for the specific purpose of attending Stetson’s Executive MBA program in Celebration, Florida — more than 3,600 miles away. She graduated in May and now is back in Iceland after quickly being taken off the job market by Coca-Cola European Partners. That, however, is another story. Scott, in only a short time at Stetson, personified world exploration, self-discovery and, generally, looking beyond. She selected Stetson not simply because of the quality of education, but because the choice itself was disruptive, in a good way. “The comfort zone is a wonderful place; you’re very safe,” says Scott, now part of a multinational team at Coca-Cola European Partners. “But you’re not going to grow, so you have to get out of that. … People have to take responsibility for their own path; they have to take responsibility for their own growth and learning.”



Sonja Scott: “The comfort zone is a wonderful place; you’re very safe. But you’re not going to grow… .”

Scott, who regularly interacts with colleagues in the United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands as part of her HR role, credits the Stetson EMBA for helping her recognize how communication and work styles differ greatly by country. The courses, she said, also prepared her for dealing with the change resulting from a recent merger within her Coca-Cola purview, which encompassed leadership, organization, procedures, values and more. In reality, her own openness toward change, as well as that education, were exactly what the company sought. Coca-Cola European Partners, so impressed during a Skype interview with her as the fall semester ended, virtually hired her on the spot. “Some cultures are more likely to use a direct communication approach, whereas others will prefer addressing topics in a softer, more indirect manner. It’s so important to be aware of these differences, and adapt oneself accordingly,” she says. “One of the continuous themes in the EMBA program was the rapid changes in business due to globalization and progress in technology. I have become more accustomed to navigating in a leadership position in a phase of transition and evolvement.” Stepping out always has been part of her nature. Born and raised in the United Kingdom, as a teenager she moved to her mother’s native Iceland, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s in human-resource management. From her HR work, she knew continuing education was “absolutely critical” for professional growth. Notably, wanting her children to develop a similar personal sense of adventure, she had her two school-age daughters and older son become part of the Stetson experience. They were joined by her husband, also a professional in Iceland. Scott calls their move “one of the best decisions of my life.” Now, she carries a bit of the university with her as she tackles the global workplace head-on with eyes wide. Her mantra: “There’s not just one way of looking at the world.” — Andy Butcher

Soldier of Safety For Todd Du Bosq, the weapons of choice are “cutting-edge research” and “best technology available.”


odd Du Bosq ’01 has applied science to keeping people from harm — intellectual armor that encompasses the detection of landmines and improving the night vision of soldiers. At a young age, he was fascinated by how things worked. He also was keen to help others. Pursuing a career as a scientist, he wanted “a position that balanced world-class research with a mission to make the world a better place.” He found it. For the past decade, the physics graduate has been doing that as part of the U.S. Army’s Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate, near Washington, D.C. As part of his work, Du Bosq leads a NATO committee comprising representatives from seven nations focused on electro-optical and infrared systems. His understated definition of the appointment: “I work directly with world-class scientists to develop technologies to solve challenging problems.” In 2014, Du Bosq was chosen for a highly selective one-year assignment to represent the U.S. Army as an exchange scientist at the Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation in Germany. There, Du Bosq says, he gained cultural awareness and helped to promote international research cooperation between the United States and Germany. Mostly, he adds, the opportunity brought the satisfaction of enhancing safety by “working on cutting-edge research while putting the best technology available in the hands of our soldiers to keep them and others safe.” Previous work in Germany, years earlier, had delivered Du Bosq’s big “aha” moment. Following Stetson, he earned a 2003 master’s and a 2007 doctorate in physics at the University Todd Du Bosq, holding daughter Juliet, uses of Central Florida, where he also received an Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award. That world-class research to make the world a better master’s work centered on wavelength selection of a broadband far-infrared laser. place. His wife, Marianna, is holding son Adrian. During those studies, he traveled to Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, where he helped to calibrate one of the instruments for the European Space Agency’s organization for Stetson’s Phi Sigma Kappa Herschel Space Observatory. Over time there, Du Bosq realized the “impact that a master’s fraternal chapter. He also volunteers as a thesis could have on the world.” After returning to UCF, he focused his doctoral research on teacher at local elementary schools, encourmeans for detecting plastic landmines, which elude traditional metal detectors and maim or aging the appreciation of science among kill people in more than 60 countries. “Early experiences inspired me to work for the U.S. Army, ensuring soldiers located all over young students. His contributions to the world notwiththe world have the finest technology available to keep them safe,” he says, modestly. standing, Du Bosq hopes his greatest global Du Bosq, a 2015 Stetson Distinguished Alumni honoree, says he wouldn’t be where he is impact is at home: as a parent raising two today without the foundation received from the Physics Department as an undergraduate. bilingual [Spanish and English] global While small classes afforded personal attention, laboratory experiments “gave me the handscitizens — “filling them with knowledge, on interactions to connect the classroom theory to the real world.” Similarly, Du Bosq embraced community service as a Hatter and continues to do so today, experiences and empathy for the world around them,” he says. — Andy Butcher serving since 2004 on the board of the Kappa Hexaton Scholarship Foundation, the alumni STETSON



Resounding Voice Lauren Nieuwland pushes boundaries in both international business and world-class opera.


ith ongoing concern about whether Russian hacking impacted the 2016 presidential election, Lauren Nieuwland’s assertion that “the need to manage, protect and secure data has never been more critical to global business, governments and individuals” rings as true as her mezzo-soprano voice. The double Stetson graduate — bachelor’s degree in music in 2007 and M.B.A. in 2009 — plays a part in that effort as a lead strategist for Veritas Technologies, a data-management specialist for Fortune 500 companies across the world. Nieuwland conducts technical sales and service for Europe, the Middle East and Africa from her base in Dubai, the largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates. “It’s rewarding being part of a company and team that focuses on providing business-critical solutions to global partners,” she says. As her industry evolves “at record speed,” with ever-heightening demands centered in and around precious nuggets of information, her workday “follows the sun.” In a continual cycle of time and pressure, she connects with colleagues and partners from China, Singapore and Australia, as well as the Middle East, Europe and America. It’s always first thing in the morning somewhere. Nonetheless, Nieuwland has shined, steadily moving up the global IT ladder. “Sharing common goals and objectives with a global community is a source of great learning and satisfaction for me,” she says about her rapid ascent. “I’ve had the benefit of working with exceptional team leaders and mentors, and it is due in no small measure to their guidance that I’ve been able to gain experience and acquire new skills at this pace.” Nieuwland first arrived in Dubai in 2009, joining her mother and fellow Stetson alumna, Karen Clark ’77, who was a regional vice president for AT&T. (Coincidentally, her grandfaThe United Arab Emirates has been a good fit ther, Fred Clark, Ph.D., was a biology professor at Stetson in the 1960s and 1970s.) Nieuwland for Lauren Nieuwland. In addition to conducting business from her base in Dubai, joined Symantec as partner-programs manager and business-development lead before transferring to the security software giant’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, for a year. She she performs in full-stage productions. then returned to Dubai with expanded regional and, eventually, international responsibilities. “Given the great combination of music Her current role began when Veritas split off from Symantec in 2016. and business studies that I was able to pursue “It’s vital that as a partner-centric global company, we have coverage to achieve growth at Stetson, I’ve made it a priority to continue ahead of the market by focusing on the right partners in each region that help us achieve both tracks since graduation,” Nieuwland influence, scale and reach to acquire new customers across all routes to market,” she adds to says, noting the United Arab Emirates has her description. put an accent on fostering both culture and Nieuwland has an effective voice on another stage, too. Despite her demanding business business, creating an “environment of role, plus pursuing a master’s in computer information systems at Boston University, she has exceptional opportunity.” found time to sing. She performs at corporate and international sporting events, such as Through it all, Nieuwland has a voice that singing the United Arab Emirates’ national anthem at the 2017 Dubai Tennis Championships. carries, resonating far overseas while serving Also, there are full-stage opera productions, including an appearance as the Dew Fairy in a as a model of global achievement on campus production of Hansel and Gretel with the National Symphony Orchestra of Abu Dhabi. For at Stetson. — Andy Butcher good measure, she teaches young singers at the American School of Dubai.



Empowering Youth

A study by Matt Morton prompted a $90 million project to improve opportunities in India.

Matt Morton continues his global pursuit of developing young people.


att Morton ’06 still was a teenager when he first got involved in helping others. Despite losing his mother while young and growing up in an oft-troubled home, he was part of the startup for a local teen center. Today, his attentiveness to the issues affecting vulnerable young people has taken him to many corners of the world, both professionally and personally. Morton is a research fellow at the University of Chicago’s Chapin Hall, a research and policy center dedicated to improving the well-being of children, youth and families. Previously, he was an economist and social-protection specialist at the World Bank, which provides financial products and technical assistance to countries in need from its headquarters in Washington, D.C. While at the World Bank, Morton studied the needs of youth in Jharkhand, one of India’s poorest states. His research found that almost three times as many young women (ages 15-24) had no schooling or work, as compared to young men. That inequality, he concluded, didn’t only affect the young women, but also hampered the state’s overall development. Morton’s study prompted a $90 million project, jointly financed by the World Bank

and the Indian government, to improve social and economic opportunities for adolescent girls and young women. It’s a program that could serve as a model for other countries seeking to close gender gaps and offer brighter futures. On a personal level, his approach is measured in these words: “Turning a blind eye to suffering elsewhere in the world erodes the foundations of our own values and humanity.” He adds, “I subscribe to Dr. [Martin Luther] King’s philosophy that ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’” With professional and personal efforts often intertwined, Morton has served as vice chair of the National Council for Youth Policy and as a policy consultant for the European Union. He worked with an international team of youth leaders in launching Youth Factor, a nonprofit that forms strategic partnerships with promising youth-empowerment programs worldwide. He’s also delivered more than 50 keynote addresses, including at the White House. Morton first honed his skills and perspective at Stetson, where he was a Bonner Scholar and founder/director of the Campaign for Adolescent & University Student Empowerment (CAUSE), a program that placed Stetson students as mentors to disadvantaged students. “I learned to ask a lot of questions and dig beneath the surface,” he says, describing his undergraduate days. Graduating from Stetson with a bachelor’s in political science, Morton earned master’s and doctoral degrees in evidence-based social intervention from the University of Oxford in England, receiving “top international student” as part of the British Council’s International Student Awards. He subsequently joined the World Bank. Morton views his widespread contributions as a way of paying it forward. “While the U.S. has marked challenges within its borders — some of which I devote a lot of time to — I also do what I can to partner with less-well-resourced countries and communities internationally,” he says. Conceding “selfish reasons” for being a global citizen, he points to actually receiving more than he gives. “When we are active and curious global citizens, I think we are often savvier students, job-seekers and voters,” Morton explains. “But the benefits of global citizenship are even richer than that. … When we spend time abroad, really immersing ourselves and listening, many of us find that we have much more to learn than we have to teach.” — Andy Butcher STETSON



Men’s Cross Country


Joe Beery set the all-time school record for fastest 8,000-meter time (25:36.92) at the ASUN Championship, earning second-team all-conference honors. Beery finished his career as the school record-holder in the 10,000; 8,000; and 5,000 meters.

Women’s Cross Country Brianne Boldrin, Clarissa Consol and Laurie Scott each beat the 19-minute mark at the ASUN Championship. Scott’s 18:42.89 was the second-fastest 5,000-meter time in school history.

Men’s Golf The Hatters showed immediate improvement by opening the season with a tie for sixth place at the 16-team Golfweek Program Challenge in South Carolina. Their score was 49 shots better than 2015’s finish. Tate Smith, Chris Williard and Baylor Payne were standouts.

Women’s Golf The Hatters recorded their first tournament victory since 2012, when they won the Butler Bulldog Florida Invitational in Jacksonville. The Hatters had five players in the top six in the field.

Baylor Payne

Football Donald Payne signed an NFL contract to play for the Baltimore Ravens, making him the first Stetson player to ever participate in an NFL camp. Payne was named the Pioneer Football League’s Defensive Player of the Year for a third consecutive year. Davion Belk earned CoSIDA Academic All-District honors for a second consecutive year. Payne, Belk and Jeb Boudreaux were selected first-team All Pioneer Football League.

Women’s Soccer Sarah Collins earned first-team All-ASUN honors for the second consecutive year and set school records with 13 goals and 32 points. Emily Plotz and Annette Morton were named second-team all-conference, while Plotz, Florencia Baldassini and Lindsey Parent were named to the all-freshmen team.

Men’s Soccer Goalkeeper Paul Ladwig was named ASUN Defensive Player of the Year. He was named second-team allregion by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. Luke Ferreira was named second-team All-ASUN, and Lucas Diniz was named to the ASUN All-Freshmen team. 50


Indoor Volleyball Madison Akins became the 11th player in school history to record 1,000 career kills. Shelby Connors became the second player in the rally scoring era to record 300 career blocks.

Women’s Basketball The team went 13-1 to win the ASUN regularseason championship for the first time ever and qualified for postseason play for the seventh consecutive year. It received votes in the USA Today Top 25 Coaches Poll for the first time ever. Brianti Saunders was named ASUN Player of the Year, and Sarah Sagerer was named ASUN Defensive Player of the Year. Lynn Bria was named ASUN Coach of the Year.

Men’s Basketball

Women’s Tennis

Divine Myles, Derick Newton and Brian Pegg all reached 1,000 career points, making Stetson one of only six teams in the nation with three 1,000-point scorers. Newton was named second-team All-ASUN.

Arijana Korac was named first-team All-ASUN. Lucie Renault and Alexe Viaud were named second-team All-ASUN. Renault and Sofia Ferding were named to the All-Freshmen team.

Men’s Tennis Loic Blanco and Angus Bradshaw were named firstteam All-ASUN. Bradshaw, Colter DeCoste and William Shkrob were named to the ASUN AllFreshmen team.

Beach Volleyball The Hatters won their third consecutive ASUN regular-season title with a 10-0 mark in league play. They finished No. 15 in the national rankings. Kristin Lind and Darby Dunn were named ASUN Pair of the Year. Sunniva Helland-Hansen was named ASUN Freshman of the Year. Kristina Hernandez was named ASUN Coach of the Year.

Softball Stetson posted its sixth consecutive winning season. At 17-3, the team got off to its best start since 2006. Frank Griffin became the 47th coach in NCAA history and the 29th coach in NCAA Division I history to record 900 career wins.

Lacrosse Sam Maguire set a school record with 42 goals scored. Maguire and Lindsay Summers were named second-team All-ASUN. Liza Diamond made the ASUN All-Freshmen team. The team recorded the first shutout in program history in a 24-0 win at Delaware State.

Men’s Rowing The men captured the Florida Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships’ team points trophy for the first time in history in April. Andrew Rouse won his fourth consecutive gold medal at the event.

Women’s Rowing The women won two gold medals and a silver at the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships on the way to winning three state championships.

Baseball The program posted all-time victory No. 2,000. Brooks Wilson became the first Stetson pitcher since Corey Kluber in 2007 to surpass 100 strikeouts in a season. Jack Perkins and Logan Gilbert joined them later in the season. Austin Hale was a candidate for the Johnny Bench Award as the top catcher in the nation.





A team photo with bats and gloves in Chicago, circa 1900.

The team poses for a gro up shot after winning the state championship in 1910.



A group photo, circa 1902, in uniforms and striped socks.

THROUGH THE SEASONS A sampling of highlights:


The Hatters, coached by Seton Fleming, play their first season of intercollegiate baseball, finishing with a record of 2-2.


Coached by G.L. Odom, the Hatters win all four of their games, including a 4-0 victory against Rollins College in the first intercollegiate baseball game in Florida.

Members of the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity baseball team pose in the 1940s.

1926-1936 The Hatter baseball program is dormant for 11 years. 1941-1945

No baseball team is fielded because of World War II.


Pete Dunn arrives on campus as a player for the Hatters, graduating in 1972 and beginning a coaching career that eventually brings him back to Stetson.

The 1948 Hatters

1970 The Hatters play in their first national postseason tournament (College Division) at the Atlantic Regional in Little Creek, Virginia. They are defeated by Ithaca and then by Florida Southern. Following the season, Pete Dunn becomes the first Hatter selected in the annual Major League Baseball Amateur Draft, taken in the 36th round by the Kansas City Royals. 1982 The team goes to its first NCAA Atlantic Regional in college baseball’s top division. The Hatters beat Florida and South Florida but lose twice to Miami, which advances in the tournament. 1986 Left-hander George Tsamis sets the school’s all-time record by striking out 19 batters in a game against Bethune-Cookman. Tsamis wins 31 games from 1986 to 1989.

Coach Carl 'Doc' Johnson stands with his  team at the beginning of spring practice in 1952.

1999 Melching Field opens, built on the same site as old Conrad Park. In the first game, the Hatters defeat Louisville, 4-3, before an overflow crowd of 2,874 fans.




2000 The team sets school records for most wins, runs, hits, RBI and batting average in a single season. The Hatters win the Trans America Athletic Conference tournament. Pitcher Lenny Dinardo sets individual records for most wins and strikeouts in a season, with 16 and 132, respectively. 2003

Third baseman Brian Snyder becomes the highest-ever Hatter draft pick, going 26th overall to the Oakland A’s. He also earns a first-team berth on the Baseball America squad.


A school-record 61,798 spectators pass through the gates at Melching Field, as pitcher Corey Kluber stars before being selected in the fourth round of the MLB draft.

2014 Former Hatters Jacob deGrom and Corey Kluber win Rookie of the Year in the National and American leagues, respectively. Kluber and Chris Johnson, another Major Leaguer, are inducted into Stetson’s Athletics Hall of Fame. Head coach Pete Dunn is inducted into the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame. 2015 Jacob deGrom is inducted into Stetson’s Athletics Hall of Fame and helps the New York Mets advance to the World Series. 2016 Pete Dunn retires after a 37-year coaching career at Stetson, compiling a record of 1,312 wins, 888 losses and three ties. Steve Trimper is named the Hatters’ 23rd head baseball coach. 2017

Sophomore pitcher Logan Gilbert strikes out 18 batters, one short of the school record, and doesn’t allow a base runner until the eighth inning, as the Hatters defeat rival Florida Gulf Coast, 1-0. In a separate contest, Steve Trimper wins the 500th game of his coaching career.


Logan Gilbert is named to the Collegiate Baseball All-America Second Team, finishing the season with a 10-0 record.



tcher and future Pete Dunn, star ca poses in 1969. coaching legend,

Stetson's first AfricanAmerican baseball player, Jim Johnson, catches a pitch in 1966.

A 1999 aerial view of the new baseball stadium, Melching Field.

Luella Nichols Melching holds a baseball at the dedication of Melching Field in 1999.

Old Conrad Park, the Hatter's former home, was torn down to make way for Melching Field.

a TAAC Baseball team members celebrate 1991. in Park rad Tournament win at Con

Players line up for the national anthem in 2000.

Logan Gilbert

Corey Kluber




Class of 2017 Senior Week Left: Osra Sipes, Patty Guevara, Sommer Mark, Lanell Oliver Right: Ayala Edouard, Adrianna Laforest, Elsa-Marie Solomon

Harold Antor, Eduarda Pavao, Mike Yonker, Marissa Salazar, Alex Jones, Lydia Kinney, Christina Gerecke, Meghan Schweizer

Isabella Riera, Maja Salibasic, Graham Ball, Hilario Menendez, Victoria Riera The ladies of AXO: (top) Brooke Shepko (white pants), Alexis Korotasz (long dress), Abigail Glover (next to long dress), Paige Vinson, Gabriella Hutcheson, Taylor Forman-Green, Taylor Scribner, Erin Lamich. (Bottom) Macie Thornhill (pink dress), Karthryn Lionetti (next to pink dress), Mary Katherine (brown dress), Lindsay Bradley (red hair), Brenna Romani (aqua blue dress) Gabby St. Angela (far right)



Harold Antor, Sal Anthony, Thomas Kaufmann, Tyler Guimaraes

Patrick Brundage, Jessie TenBroeck, Kelsey Waters, Evin Lynch

Fred Lee, Peter Nyong’o, Aubrianna Lee Spurgin-Kabinu

Left: Paula Yera, Adriana Dilger Right: Lindsay Summers, Erin Busch, Julia Lozano, Christina Wittmeier, Lauren McDonald Left: Delaney Christine, Precious Paxson, Jenni Hughes Right: Jordan Bennett, Joselyn Regan, Summer Page

Left: Martyna Sopalska, Danielle Kramer Right: Joseph Moran, Tom Sheahan

Left: Taylor Silviera, Emma Clark Right: Madison Jones, Ashni Deschenes, Madison Kell, Jimmy Rainey

Photos by Riana Metzger ’19




Fort Lauderdale

Dean Trantalis, J.D. ’79, Chuck Wolfe ’85 Jeff Ulmer, vice president of Development, Alumni and Parent Engagement, with Marilyn Johnston ’55 Page Grant, Ned Skiff

Isabel Walker-Burgos ’16, Althea Campbell ’16 Shannon Gunning ’12, Sylvia Feil (parent of Dante Medina ’19)




Byron Cheney Russell ‘76 and Lauren Russell

Kimberly and Greg Burkhamer (parents of Quintin Burkhamer ’20), Kurt Sylvia (parent of Nicolas Sylvia ’20)

Charlie Page ’10, Patrick McGlon, Emily Sawyer McGlon ’10, Katherine Chacon ’09

Patty Guevaria ’17 with parents Elsa and Alfonso Guevaria Left: Julie and Kevin Kelly (parents of Nick Kelly ’19) Right: Jim Miller ’77, Marybeth Towery




Leadership Stetson 2017 2017 Leadership Stetson Class

Left: Honorary chair Max Cleland ’64 visits with Chaplain Emeritus Michael Fronk ’74. Center: Mark Marcus ’14, Rina Arroyo, Daryl Holt ’90, Ray Holley ’91 J.D. ’97, Adrienne Boyle ’07 Right: Amy Bucciarelli ‘03 receiving her Leadership Stetson certificate Left: Tony Guzzetta ’85, guest speaker Mike Waltz, Dennis Martin ‘83 Right: Head football coach Roger Hughes addresses the Leadership Stetson class.



CELEBRATE STETSON! Stetson University Alumni Association

Celebrate Stetson events are designed to showcase the many exciting initiatives happening at Stetson, including Beyond Success Significance, our current $150 million fundraising campaign. We have “Celebrated Stetson” with events in Asheville, North Carolina, and across Florida in Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Jupiter, Orlando and Tampa. There are upcoming Florida events in Naples, Sarasota and St. Petersburg, along with Atlanta, New York City and Washington, D.C. A huge Hatter ”thank you” to those who have been generous sponsors of our Celebrate Stetson events!

TITLE SPONSORS John R. Ellerman ’68, M.B.A. ’69 • Glen W. Hauenstein ’82 • Laura and Byron Cheney Russell ’76 Sissy and Troy Templeton ’82, M.B.A. ’83


GOLD SPONSORS Melvyn A. “Mel” Rodelli ’64

SILVER SPONSORS David P. “DC” Carlton ’83 • Barbara Cross Leemis ’52 • Jeanette Guess Baker ’74 • Jo Guess Jones ’83 Blane McCarthy, ’92 J.D. ’95 • Frank E. Morreale ’93

GREEN SPONSORS Michael S. Cortes ’05, M.B.A. ’06 • Ray Holley ’91, J.D. ’97 • Mary F. Andrew ’75 • G. Edward Towson II ’80

To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, contact: Woody O’Cain | Assistant Vice President of Alumni and Parent Engagement Stetson University , 421 N. Woodland Blvd., Unit 8257 | DeLand, FL 32723 O 386.822.7481 | C 864.616.3076 | E | W STETSON



Send Us Your Class Note STETSON UNIVERSITY is proud of its alumni and their accomplishments. We would love to hear about your achievements. If you are a graduate from the DeLand or Celebration campus, please send

1950s Charles “Charlie” Winn ’57, San Antonio, Texas, is the subject of three chapters in a new book, “Revival, How a Tenor Lost His Voice But Found His Calling,” by Donald Braswell. Braswell writes of Winn’s love and support for him and his family on his journey to winning fourth place in 2008 on “America’s Got Talent.”


your class note to Stetson University, Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement, 421

graphic exhibit, “In Time We Shall Know Ourselves: American Photographs by Raymond Smith.” Smith has titled his talk: “Florida in my work as photographer” and dedicates it to his mentor, the late John Hague. For Smith, “Photography … is more closely related to literature, especially fiction [despite its proclivity to depict ‘reality’], than it is to other visual arts. Whether the location is a city sidewalk, a back yard, a roadside or a door front, for me the portrait is primary, and the photograph is a short story exploding beyond its frame.”

N. Woodland Blvd., Unit 8257, DeLand, FL 32723, or email your news to If you are a graduate of the College of Law, send your class note to Stetson University College of Law, Office of Development and Alumni Engagement, 1401 61st St. South, Gulfport, FL 33707, or email your class note to alumni@law.stetson. edu. College of Law graduates also can fill out the online form at lawalumninews. We can only use photos that are high resolution, and because of space limitations, we cannot guarantee use of all photographs.



Lorna Jean Brooks Hagstrom ’64, DeLand, Florida, recently was awarded Trustee of the Year (Florida Hospital DeLand) at a national conference hosted by the Adventist Health System. Louis J. Phillips ’64, New York, New York, a widely published poet, playwright and short-story writer, recently published “The Domain of Small Mercies New and Selected Poems.” The book is a follow-up to his “The Domain of Silence/Domain of Absence New and Selected Poems (19632015).” He can be found online at Raymond W. Smith ’64, New Haven, Connecticut, returned to Florida for a limited engagement, accompanying his photo-

journals, a chapter on compliance for a professional organization and a thesis paper for Fellow status with a professional organization. He also has made more than 100 presentations nationally and regionally on a variety of health care topics. He is a Certified Public Accountant and formerly was a partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Ernst & Young. Ellen Lewis Emenheiser ’73, Tallahassee, Florida, worked 35 years for the State of Florida, retiring in 2010 from the Agency for Health Care Administration. In 2011, she joined CSG Government Solutions as a senior consultant and recently celebrated her five-year anniversary with the agency. Since joining CSG, she twice has received the Consulting Achievement Award (2012 and 2016).


David E. Sumner ’69, Anderson, Indiana, has published a biography of his great-great-grandfather, “John Thrasher: Georgia Pioneer, Politician, and Philanthropist.” It is available on Amazon and Kindle.

1970s Lance S. Loria ’72, Montgomery, Texas, is celebrating 15 years as CEO of Loria Associates, a management consulting firm that advises hospitals and other health care entities on a broad range of financial, regulatory and business-improvement matters. During his career, Loria has published 65 articles in professional

Joe Montgomery ’81, Rome, Georgia, was recognized as part of the 2017 Heart of the Community Awards of Honor. He is assistant head of school for strategic initiatives at Darlington School. He has more than three decades of experience in banking and fundraising for private

educational institutions. His service to community includes, among other efforts, board work with the South Rome Redevelopment Corp.; scholarship fundraising for the Early Learning Center at Anna K. Davie Elementary School; and board membership to the Greater Rome and Georgia State chambers of commerce. Also, he is a member of the Leadership Georgia Board of Trustees, where he received the Fred Kerr Award for enthusiastic support of Leadership Georgia on a continuing and consistent basis, and he is a lifelong volunteer for the Boy Scouts of America. Tommye Barie ’83, Sarasota, Florida, was awarded the Master Accountant award by Stetson’s M.E. Rinker Sr. Institute for Tax and Accountancy. The award recognizes mentorship, achievement, continuing education, teaching, enthusiasm, and commitment to personal and professional ethics. Barie is a partner with Mauldin & Jenkins LLC and was chair of the American Institute of CPAs for 2014-2015. Luis G. Pedraja ’84, Los Angeles, California, was appointed president of Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester, Massachusetts. He previously was the interim vice chancellor of Academic Affairs for the Peralta Community College District. Nathan J. Boutwell ’85, Denton, Texas, has selfpublished “A Path of Stones,” a book about a newly initiated wizardess

who has a strange power within her that enables her to perform miracles.

1990s Tami Ueda-Heuer ’94, Florence, Kentucky, was promoted to First Officer at United Airlines.


Mary-Beth Valley ’02, DeLand, Florida, joined Burr & Forman, LLP, as counsel in the law firm’s Orlando office. She helps lead its Creditors’ Rights and Bankruptcy practice., which involves working with lenders and commercial mortgage-backed securities, among many others. In addition, she is a member of The Florida Bar, Commercial Real Estate Women and Volusia County Bar Association, and she serves on the board of the Commercial Finance Association’s Orlando Chapter.


Jamie Blucher ’01, Orlando, Florida, has joined the law firm of Winderweedle, Haines, Ward & Woodman, P.A., practicing in general commercial litigation in the areas of business debt collection, commercial foreclosures and workouts, construction contract and defect disputes, and general breach of contract actions. She also practices in bankruptcy, with a focus on representing creditors and trustees in bankruptcy cases, adversary proceedings and appeals. In 2013, she was awarded the Pro Bono Award of Excellence by the Orange County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section and in 2014 was awarded a New Lawyer Award of Excellence by the Legal Aid Society of the OCBA. During her career, she has logged hundreds of pro bono hours, representing abused and neglected children.

Kennedy B. Legler ’08, J.D. ’11, Bradenton, Florida, has been promoted to assistant state attorney, Violent Crimes Division for the State of Florida.



Marriages 1 Kurt Shiver ’03 to Ann Lambert, Jan. 7, 2017.


2 Nicole Milazzo ’04 to Tony Capitano ’04, May 27, 2016. 3 Fauve Beaudin ’07 to Sean Roberts, September 3, 2016. 4 Laura Hill ’11 to Brennan Palisi ’11, April 29, 2016.



5 Brittany McDaniel ’14 to Austin Marr ’14, Oct. 22, 2016. 6 Christine Iseley ’15 to Deryck Greene ’14, July 30, 2016. 6 STETSON



Volley and Serve Steve Flink, who entered Stetson in fall 1973 as a player and stayed for three semesters, never was a tennis star. He is, however, a star journalist in tennis. In July, Flink officially receives what is widely considered the highest honor in tennis: induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. He joins Kim Clijsters and Andy Roddick, former world No. 1 Steve Flink (on right) shares a players; Monique Kalkman-van den moment with Ken Rosewall, Bosch, a four-time Paralympic the Australian great who won medalist in wheelchair tennis; and, eight major titles, at this year’s posthumously, Vic Braden, a ground- Australian Open. breaking tennis instructor. Flink has more than reported and analyzed the game of tennis; he has captured it for the world. His career began in the early 1970s, when Hall of Famer Bud Collins hired him to help with research at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open. By 1974, he was on staff at World Tennis magazine, where he was a writer and editor until 1991. From 1992 to 2007, he was a senior writer for Tennis Week. For the past 10 years, he’s been a columnist for In addition, Flink has authored two significant historical books, “The Greatest Tennis Matches of the Twentieth Century” and “The Greatest Tennis Matches of All Time.” Flink also has worked on-air for ESPN, among others, plus has been a tennis correspondent for CBS Radio and a statistician for ABC, CBS and NBC. “It has been my honor to transcribe to the world through my work the great moments and the remarkable personalities of tennis,” Flink says. “Across all these years, I never could have imagined that I would someday be recognized as a Hall of Famer and as a part of this sport’s history.”

Career in Retrospect Amy Horton ’77 earned a degree in psychology at Stetson, participating on the debate team, where she was a state finalist in 1975, and on the forensics team, where she was a national finalist in 1975. Later, she became a Washington, D.C.-based attorney and legal adviser to the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, providing assistance on lawreform activities in developing countries. Her global work also includes serving as associate general counsel to the Peace Corps. At present, Horton mostly is retired, working part time as legal adviser for a regulatory process relating to the listing and delisting of public securities on the Nasdaq. Horton reflects on her career: “I’ve loved the international work I’ve done throughout my legal career – drafting laws with Hondurans, teaching corporate ethics in the Philippines, investigating sexual harassment in Cape Verde, advising nonprofits in Albania. My work, combined with that of many colleagues, may have moved the dial a tiny notch. But the work, for sure, stretched me. Legal expertise was usually the least important ingredient. I was continually pressed to find ways to communicate, person-toperson, on issues of common interest across chasms of difference. That is a skill that will always be in demand, and one that Americans, now more than ever, need to develop.”

The Numbers Added Up As a student at Stetson, Bret Marty ’91 was “horrific at statistics.” Today, he is sales director, exchange traded products, at Wells Fargo Securities International in London, specializing in commodities, equities and government bonds on a global scale. Coincidence? Absolutely not, asserts Marty, who graduated with a degree in finance. Stetson, he explains, was pivotal both in providing encouragement during difficult times and in providing opportunities to explore interests. Marty received three D’s in statistics — his only such poor grades at Stetson — but it could have been worse. “Those three D’s, trust me, they should have been F’s. The professor recognized how hard I worked,” Marty remembers. Then there was a school trip to Chicago to study financial markets. Alumni there took Marty under their wing and brought him to realize his career aspiration: market trading. An internship in Jacksonville sharpened his focus. “I just didn’t want to be a [market] trader; I wanted to be bonded trader able to trade U.S. government securities,” he says. Finally, when that internship resulted in the chance to move to New York, Marty got the needed help from Stetson to make it happen. Two courses short of graduation, he received permission to leave, with the



caveat of completing his course work in New York. Marty ultimately did in December 1991. Less than a year later, he was off to London. Looking back, Marty wouldn’t trade a thing about Stetson. “It was a very nurturing environment. Stetson was an amazing opportunity for me,” he comments. Marty grew in another way, too. When he arrived on campus from nearby Daytona Beach, Florida, he had no plans to leave the state for work. That changed. “I thought Jacksonville, probably, and maybe Miami,” Marty says with a hint of formal English in his voice. “Atlanta sounded exotic at that point in time.”

In Memoriam Hall-of-Fame Giving Patricia Maxcy Wilson ’47 helped transform Stetson Athletics — and she was pretty good at sports herself, playing every intramural sport available as a student. A longtime supporter and advocate of the athletics program, Wilson provided annual scholarships for the men’s baseball and women’s softball programs, and in 1998 was inducted into Stetson’s Athletics Hall of Fame. The Wilson Athletic Center on campus bears her name, as does the softball field. In addition, Wilson was a huge contributor across the university. She received a Distinguished Alumni Award in 1981 and served on Stetson’s Board of Trustees from 1986 to 1996. Two years later, she was named Stetson University Trustee Emerita. In 2006, the Maxcy Residence Hall was constructed in her name. Wilson met her husband, Peyton (Pat) Wilson ’47, at Stetson, where, along with sports and studying business administration, she was a member of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. They were married in 1947. After graduation, they moved to Frostproof, Florida, and became involved in business and the community. She chaired the first board of trustees of the Latt Maxcy Memorial Library after its opening in 1978 and was honored as Frostproof’s 1981 Woman of the Year. Wilson spent many hours tracing the lineage of her parents’ families. Notably, she was the great-great-niece of Confederate Brig. Gen. Maxcy Gregg, portrayed in the movie Gods and Generals, who was killed at the Battle of Fredericksburg. She also was a direct descendant of Jonathan Maxcy, the second president of Brown University and first president of what now is the University of South Carolina, where a statue of him stands in tribute. On March 19, Wilson died unexpectedly at her home in Mountain Lake, Florida.

Patricia Maxcy Wilson with husband Pat

Leading by Example Joe Alan McClain ’55 J.D. ’58 accomplished much before arriving at Stetson in 1955. At Etowah High School in Etowah, Tennessee, he played football, ran track, was the basketball team manager, and was president of his class all four years. McClain then served in the U.S. Air Force from 1950 to 1952, commissioned as a second lieutenant. Reportedly, while stationed at an Alaskan listening post, he was the second American to learn that Russia had an atomic weapon. McClain led by example. At Stetson, that high achievement didn’t end. He served as chapter president of the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity and president of the Student Government Association, as well as an ROTC commander. He received a bachelor’s degree in business administration before graduating from Stetson University College of Law in 1958 and entering The Florida Bar that same year. McClain became a 50-year member of The Florida Bar and a stalwart in politics. He served as a member of the Florida House of Representatives from 1958 to 1962. He was assistant state attorney from 1964 to 1971, general counsel to the Pasco County School Board from 1972 to 2002, and general counsel to the Pasco County Clerk of Circuit Court from 1977 until his retirement. Also, he was a two-time president of the Pasco County Bar Association (1966 and 1975) and a member of the Florida School Board Attorneys Association from 1973 to 2005. On July 30, 2016, McClain died with his family by his side.




In Memoriam Community Servant Bill McCullough ’77, who earned a bachelor’s degree in religious studies, credited Stetson for his approach to change-making. In a November 2016 Stetson Today article, he noted that “Stetson gave me the opportunity to look for truth.” Hood with wife Mary There were lessons about service, too. In that article, written as McCullough was vying for the District 6 seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, Bill McCullough ’77 Stanton O’Neal, a retired DeLand educator, stated, “We need more people who are in politics, not as a career but as a service.” Later that month, McCullough lost his political race. A resident of DeLeon Springs, Florida, for more than 30 years, McCullough had deep Florida roots. His family moved to the region during the 1860s, and his grandfather was a true Florida cattleman. McCullough graduated from Fort Pierce Central High and Indian River Community College before arriving at Stetson.

1930s William T. Windsor, J.D. ’31

1940s Fransue M. Baxter ’46 Wallace R. Smith, LL.B. ’47 Patricia Maxcy Wilson ’47 Daniel Murphey, LL.B. ’49 Rodger Whitemore, J.D. ’49

1950s Clyde L. Roberts ’50, LL.B. ’52 William B. Towers, LL.B. ’50 Edward J. Trotter, LL.B. ’50 Carlton L. Welch, LL.B. ’50 Wayne W. West, LL.B. ’50 Peter Olinto, LL.B. ’51



Robert J. Pauley, LL.B. ’51 Harry E. Nichols, J.D. ’52 Leonard T. Melton ’53 Mildred L. McFall, M.A. ’54, J.D. ’78 Leslie McLeod, LL.B. ’54 Alton R. Pittman, LL.B. ’55 Ernest C. Wiggins, LL.B. ’56 John H. McCormick, J.D. ’58 William J. O’Brien, LL.B. ’58 Henry L. Williford, LL.B. ’58 Raymond E. Rhodes, LL.B. ’59

1960s John M. Stevens, J.D. ’60 Jan J. Piper, J.D. ’62 Richard D. Staab, LL.B. ’62 Glenn M. Woodworth, LL.B. ’62

After graduating, he managed a successful retail building-supply store, and became a financial and investment executive. McCullough started several small businesses and served as a chief administrative officer for a not-for-profit foundation. His commitment to public service led him to become a church leader and a youth-sports volunteer, among other community endeavors. On Jan. 22, McCullough was killed in an automobile accident that also claimed family members.

Ronald D. Trow, J.D. ’78 Albert C. Williams, J.D. ’78

Felton H. Odom, LL.B. ’64 Walter E. Mackoul, J.D. ’66 Annica M. Becker ’67 James C. Fisher, LL.B. ’67 James H. Turner, J.D. ’69




Roberta M. Davis, J.D. ’73 Peter Napier, J.D. ’73 William G. Norwich, J.D. ’73 Marc A. Gordon, J.D. ’74 John P. France, J.D. ’77 Steven H. Judd, J.D. ’77 Robert E. Wharrie, J.D. ’77 Douglas A. Mulligan, J.D. ’78 Vernon R. Todd, J.D. ’78

Merrie R. Crowell, J.D. ’84 Robert H. Shapiro, J.D. ’86

John C. Archer, J.D. ’91 Patrick J. Gorman, J.D. ’93

2000s Anne D. Reeves, J.D. ’03 Jeffrey W. DiRubio ’07


Standing Tall John B. Stetson Jr. (1884–1952) poses in his military uniform in 1917 — the year America declared war on Germany and entered World War I. The oldest son of university benefactor John B. Stetson and a university trustee from 1906 to 1952, he embodied the Hatter spirit of making a difference.




Office of University Marketing 421 N. Woodland Blvd., 8319 DeLand, FL 32723

STETSON is printed on FSCcertified paper.

ARTS AT STETSON Through July 29

The Highwaymen: Art Innovators in a Civil Rights Epoch Co-curators Tonya Curran and Lisa Stone organized the collection of works by the noted African-American painters known as the Highwaymen. Their works, made quickly and originally sold along Florida’s east-coast highway, primarily are brightly colored landscapes. Florida’s Highwaymen, a group of 26 African-American landscape artists, created a niche for themselves in Florida’s history in the 1950s-1960s. The group began in Fort Pierce, Florida, with Alfred Hair, who had learned technical aspects of landscape painting from Albert E. “Bean” Backus. Hair realized the cultural and economic limitations he faced as a black man in the segregated South, so he began selling his

paintings door-to-door. Eventually, he employed a crew of friends as commissioned salesmen to sell paintings along the sides of Florida’s highways — hence the name Florida Highwaymen.

Through July 31

Oscar Bluemner: 150th Birthday Exhibition A selection of works from the Hand Art Center collection are by the noted American Modernist artist, who was born in Germany 150 years ago.

Aug. 21-Dec. 5

Vision and Revision: 150 Years (Sesquicentennial) of Oscar Bluemner A wide-ranging exhibit of never-before-shown works by Bluemner, whose paintings form the backbone of the Hand Art Center’s collection. Organized by Stetson professor emerita and curator Roberta Smith Favis, the exhibit features works that reveal the range of Bluemner’s vision. (See Page 22.)

Florida’s Highwaymen, a group of 26 African-American landscape artists, created a niche for themselves in Florida’s history.

Summer 2017 Exhibitions Stetson University Homer and Dolly Hand Art Center 139 E. Michigan Ave. DeLand, FL 32723 Phone: 386-822-7270 Hours: Monday-Wednesday and Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturday, noon-4 p.m.; Sunday, closed All exhibits are free and open to the public.

Profile for Stetson University

Stetson Magazine  

Summer 2017

Stetson Magazine  

Summer 2017

Profile for stetsonu