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Research and Rewards How faculty, students and alumni are making a real difference

Rosalie Richards, Ph.D. Associate Provost for Faculty Development



STETSON | Fall 2018

FITTING TRIBUTE. Last spring, Stetson was included in Country Living magazine’s “25 of the Most Beautiful College Campuses In the South,” which carried the subhead of “There’s just something so charming about these sprawling Southern campuses.” Cozy and comfortable could have been other appropriate words. For more rankings of the university, see pages 7 and 8.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON






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

32 Departments


2 BEGINNINGS Fitting Tribute

20 Vim and Vibrato

6 WELCOME Noble and Nobel Efforts 7 LETTERS Reader Responses 8 INTELLIGENTSIA News and Notes About Knowledge 16 FIRST PERSON ‘A Great Learning Experience’ 18 IMPACT Passion Pursuit 52 ATHLETICS Scoreboard: 180-3.0 56 ALUMNI Celebrating Hatters Everywhere 62 THE CLASSES Accolades and Achievements 67 PARTING SHOT Fond Farewell

Clyde T. Shaw ’73 reflects on his career odyssey as a worldtraveling cellist.

24 Archiving Lore

Scrapbooks, chimes, a winning sweater and a regal wave from Desmond Tutu capture heritage and history through the decades.

28 The Third Tier

With education hanging in the balance, a call is made for distributing leadership to empowered mission-driven teams.

32 Campaign Significance

Snapshots of the university’s charitable giving reveal lasting impact — plus the potential for much more.

Editor Michael Candelaria Designer Michelle Martin Editorial Assistant Donna Nassick Art and Photography Bobby Fishbough, Faith Jones, Joel Jones, Brittany Strozzo Writers Andy Butcher, Christopher Colwell, Ed.D. (’77, M.Ed. ’82), Rick de Yampert, Marie Dinklage, Rick Koethe ’77, Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D., Woody O’Cain, Brandi Palmer, Rosalie Richards, Ph.D., Kevin Riggs, Ph.D., Jack Roth, Trish Wieland 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.

Want to add, remove or change your magazine subscription?

Email universitymagazine@stetson.edu.


STETSON | Fall 2018



Research Issue 36 Taking Stock of Our Sciences

48 No Squandered Sabbatical

40 Showcase of Transformation

50 From Webby to Reform

Institutional support and an undergraduate culture shaped by an environment focused on research are creating new distinctiveness at Stetson.

Finding new devotion through student research, alumni now are helping to change the world, one frog or song or micro enterprise at a time.

44 Cells of Growth

‘Really rare’ opportunities for laboratory study put undergraduates face-to-face with potential links to cures for cancer.

46 Coastline Query

Professor Jason Evans has raised the question of sea-level rise from shore to shore. And he’s finding answers.

Professor Terence Farrell’s time away from the classroom was all about the behavior of snakes and the benefits of collaboration. Winners were everywhere.

Faculty are pushing the boundaries of their convention far and wide at Stetson University College of Law.

ON THE COVER: Rosalie Richards, Ph.D., Stetson University’s associate provost for Faculty Development, is a nationally recognized leader in undergraduate research. See her perspective on Page 36. Photo by Bobby Fishbough

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Noble and Nobel Efforts students and faculty. For 20 years and The timing couldn’t be better for our counting, as you will read in the following Research Issue. The Nobel Prizes were pages, these methods of organizing and announced in October, and we celebrate promoting the art and science of our scientists achieving breakthrough work disciplines provide students opportunities in cancer therapy and a chemist whose to share their experiences and polish their directed evolution of enzymes is leading presentation skills before the broader to greener practices in pharmaceuticals community each year. and transportation. What happens at Stetson on this Research. Discovery. Progress. front is a rarity among undergraduate It is not coincidental that such institutions — and a competitive advanadvances occur at universities. Such is tage for Stetson students who capitalize the relevance and enduring value of our on the chance to dive into research institutions of higher learning today. Not alongside faculty, to learn techniques only do we prepare students for their and practice them firsthand, and to be careers, but we also serve to advance mentored and guided in ways that whole societies and their knowledge base. enhance their resumes and graduateWhile Stetson is a university known Moments of discovery school applications. more by our teaching than our research, and honed practice Scholarly research and creative I can argue all week long — supported activity represent hefty work for our by much evidence — that our lower launch our students out faculty, too, who must also carve out student-to-faculty ratios and our focus into the world in the time and space to be enriched by their on the intimacy of the faculty-student pursuit of their passions, own learning — learning that they conmentor relationship are powerful forces tinually bring to their students. Faculty that catalyze students’ research — as bolstered by an ability to sabbaticals allow professors like Terence well as their creative work and serviceenlighten and stir similar Farrell, Ph.D., uninterrupted time in the learning projects — now and into the enthusiasm in others. field to pursue deeper study of snake coming decades. behavior. Facilities like our new Sandra Whether it involves the fascinating Stetson Aquatic Center on Lake behavior of reptiles for Danielle Leopold Beresford will allow faculty like Jason Evans, Ph.D., an expert on Regan ’10 or the call of Vienna and the intersection of music sea-level rise, an environment for innovative work. and poetry for Jenna Siladie ’11, there are important outcomes Innovative work. Important achievements. Changed converof concentrated work at the undergraduate level. Moments of sations. Our students and faculty are creating “for the greatest discovery and honed practice launch our students out into the benefit of humankind” in the spirit of Alfred Nobel’s legacy. world in the pursuit of their passions, bolstered by an ability to There’s hardly a greater role for an institution of higher enlighten and stir similar enthusiasm in others. education. A certain intrinsic motivation spurs students’ deep immersion in undergraduate research or creative endeavor. Something along the way sparks their interest, leads them on a chase, creates unanswered questions. And then, they are hooked. This is an entirely useful way to spend a life. And it is an invaluable Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D. mission to which a university must devote itself. Discoveries of all President, Stetson University sorts, large and small, are produced in volumes on a college campus each day. P.S. I would be remiss if I didn’t close with an invitation: Please And so, not only do we offer Stetson Undergraduate Research join us for Stetson Showcase on April 16, 2019, to celebrate our Experience (SURE) grants across our fields of study, but we also students and faculty! provide a venue, Stetson Showcase, to amplify the work of our 6

STETSON | Fall 2018


More SPREES Reminiscence I enjoyed the SPREES article (Stetson’s Program in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, Page 22) and letter on Dr. (Serge) Zenkovsky in the Summer 2018 issue and also an article a few issues ago outlining the history of Russian studies at Stetson. But I notice that the contributions of Dr. John Evans, assistant professor of Russian history at Stetson, 1967-1974, are not mentioned. I was a student of Dr. Evans and with his help participated in the 1970 mini-semester in Russia. Once my military service ended, he encouraged me to study with his Ph.D. adviser, which for financial reasons did not occur, but I was able to attend Florida State University, where I received my Ph.D. in Russian history. After that, I interlaced a career in the U.S. intelligence community and teaching. After retiring, I have continued to teach inside the intelligence community and at graduate programs around the Washington, D.C., area. My very rewarding career was built on the Russian history classes that Dr. Evans taught. Michael Douglas Smith ’70, Reston, Virginia

Delicious Ambiguity Note: A handwritten letter was sent directly to Stetson University President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D. That letter is edited here for space. In the Summer 2018 issue, your column “Delicious Ambiguity” made me think of journeys we have taken, and are still taking, since our graduation there in 1955. We were not so concerned about the environment, safe water, endangered animals — so many things now offered as part of the pedagogical smorgasbord. Our Stetson journeys took us through scholarships; various jobs; required chapel services every Wednesday; sipping coffee in the Slop Shop, many times with our professors; and certainly with our friends and fellow journeymen. These friends and professors were all parts of the tapestries we were weaving as we journeyed. In 1953, Stetson bought Brittain Hall, a lovely old house a block or so off campus, and converted it into a “dorm” for 18 female students, overseen by Mrs. Erin Baker, herself the mother of four daughters. The ROTC had their equipment in the basement, over which was one wing of tiny rooms with connecting baths. (That’s where I lived.) Up the main stairs off the lobby was Liz’s room — Elizabeth Osburn, music major and contralto soloist in the Stetson Glee Club, high school valedictorian, on a music scholarship. Liz also worked as an accompanist in the School of Music. At the end of the hall were two English majors, Lynn Pier and June Woodard, both also valedictorians and both were on academic scholarships. Lynn was also on a tennis scholarship and worked at Stover Theatre. June was also on a state teacher’s scholarship and worked in the Commons, as well as the Women’s Gym. I was not a valedictorian and not on scholarship, but worked at three or four jobs at a time and was an art-education major.

I was the selfappointed comic relief, entertaining the girls by paint“The B Girls” in 2010, from left: Elizabeth Osburn, ing signs weekly for Lovett’s grocery Lynn Pier, June Woodard and Dodi Costine Lovett store and playing Santa Claus at our dorm Christmas parties. As residents of Brittain Hall, we four called ourselves “The B Girls,” feeling so naughty as we scandalized our peers. Of course, after we graduated, we married and moved away from each other. … We exchanged Christmas cards, the occasional phone call (which was “long-distance” and expensive in those days), but for the most part we were each busy with our own families and life directions. Then Liz and I both attended a ’55 Stetson Reunion in Commerce, Georgia, about 20 years ago. The magic was still there; the B Girl spirit rose again; we needed to get together. So, we began to have our own little reunions once a year. … This past April, Liz and I did a Rhine River cruise, missing June, whose husband is in poor health — and missing Lynn (deceased). Between the four of us, we had seven children — good, responsible, professional; and 18 wonderful grandchildren who are on their way to upgrade this old world: teachers, engineers, nurses, social workers, musicians, emergency medical technicians, pastors. Sure, “ ... not all poems rhyme and some stories don’t have a clear beginning. ... Life is about not knowing, having to change. ... Delicious ambiguity.” Our years shared at Stetson helped us as we continued to grow in faith, valuable friendships, sweet memories, bright hopes for tomorrow … and so much appreciation that our common walk led us through Elizabeth Hall! Dodi Costine Lovett ’55, Centerville, Tennessee

Recognition and Reputation Stetson is proud to be recognized as a top university in nationwide rankings and lists. U.S. News & World Report, Regional Universities (South) • No. 5, Best Regional Universities (South), 2019 • No. 3, Best for Veterans, 2019 • Best Undergraduate Teaching, 2019 • Best Value Schools, 2019 • No. 1, Trial Advocacy, 2018, College of Law • No. 3, Legal Writing, 2018, College of Law • General Recognition Part-Time Program, College of Law Also: • The Princeton Review’s 2019 Best 384 Colleges • MONEY magazine Best Colleges for Your Money, 2019 •  Country Living magazine 25 Most Beautiful College Campuses in the South, 2018

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


INTELLIGENTSIA U.S. News & World Report ranked Stetson No. 5 on its 2019 list of Best Regional Universities (South).

‘Best’ Rankings The rankings are in, and Stetson has maintained impressive status, according to The Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report. In August, The Princeton Review named Stetson one of the “Best 384 Colleges,” an honor given to only approximately 15 percent of America’s four-year colleges. The ranking appears in the 2019 edition of “The Best 384 Colleges.” The Princeton Review praised Stetson for its academics and campus life, writing, “Very important factors considered include rigor of secondary school record and academic GPA,” adding other factors considered are “class rank, application essay, standardized test scores, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, character and work experience.” U.S. News & World Report ranked Stetson No. 5 on its 2019 list of Best Regional Universities (South), as well as No. 3 on the list of Best for Veterans Regional Universities (South). In addition, Stetson was included on lists for Best Undergraduate Teaching Regional Universities (South) and Best Value Schools Regional Universities (South), and the Stetson University College of Law ranked No. 1 for Trial Advocacy and No. 2 for Legal Writing in the United States. Stetson has been named the top law school for Trial Advocacy 20 times in 24 years and has consistently been placed among the top six legal-writing programs since the inception of the Legal Writing rankings in 2005. U.S. News & World Report defines schools in the Regional Universities category as offering a full range of undergraduate programs and some master’s programs but few doctoral programs. — Janie Graziani 8

STETSON | Fall 2018

DID YOU KNOW? Stetson School of Music’s Christmas Candlelight Concerts, which involve the Concert Choir, Women’s Chorale, Stetson Men and instrumentalists from the Symphonic Band and Chamber Orchestra, will continue their grand tradition of performances at Lee Chapel on the DeLand campus — but with an added twist. Three performances are planned for Lee Chapel, with a final performance moving to downtown Orlando at First United Methodist Church on Dec. 1.






Carnegie and China with Cello Stetson sophomore Megan Savage and her cello had quite a summer. Savage, who studies both music and health science, performed at Carnegie Hall with the National Youth Orchestra in July. Then she traveled with the orchestra on a five-city tour of China and Taiwan. Last February, Savage earned a spot in the National Youth Orchestra, which is administered by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute. There were approximately 1,000 applicants from across the United States for 110 spots, including only 12 cello positions. Savage first auditioned for the NYO three years ago when she was a home-schooled high school student with dual enrollment at Indian River State College near her home in Port St. Lucie, Florida. “It’s really interesting how orchestra helps me with my performance. I feel like I can play my heart out and not worry,” she said. “If you make a slight mistake, it’s OK. You keep going; you’re in a group; you’re a team. You feel the support of everyone around you.” Despite the recent success, however, Savage is leaning toward a career in health science. “I want to take biology and chemistry and see which one clicks with me, and in the near future I’ll narrow it down to something more specific,” she added. “But music is something I feel like will always be a part of my life.” — Rick de Yampert

Megan Savage was one of only 12 cellists to perform with the National Youth Orchestra.

Record Enrollment Stetson enrolled the most undergraduate students in its history for the Fall Semester, with undergraduate enrollment climbing to 3,150 in September, up from 3,084 a year ago. In addition, the semester brought the second-largest class of first-year students in university history, with 895. An additional 294 graduate students are enrolled at Stetson’s DeLand and Celebration campuses. Stetson College of Law in Gulfport reported 896 students enrolled for the fall, up from 867 a year ago. Across Stetson’s four campuses, total enrollment reached 4,341, up from 4,273 a year ago. The university conducts an official census each September and reports the enrollment information to the federal government, college guides and other sources. Stetson’s goal is to maintain an average enrollment for the academic year of about 3,000 undergraduates. That requires enrollment to be slightly higher each fall because typically a small number of students do not return between the fall and spring semesters. “We are looking to strategically continue to diversify the student body in a lot of different areas and continue to have a robust, holistic student body that is representative of our local, state and national community,” commented Resche Hines, Ph.D., Stetson’s assistant vice president for Institutional Research and Effectiveness. — Cory Lancaster

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Stetson rowers will have a new home in early 2019, the Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center.

Rowing Toward Completion The rising Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center is scheduled to open early in the spring semester. The two-story, $6.2 million center on 10 acres along Lake Beresford, 7 miles from Stetson’s historic campus in DeLand, will provide a permanent home for Stetson’s intercollegiate rowing teams (first floor), along with areas for water study/ research (second floor) and non-motorized public recreation access to the lake. Among the highlights of the first floor is a housing bay for the crew boats, which can measure up to 58 feet, plus eight large racks to hold the sculls (oars). The doors of the bay are designed to fold like an accordion. Both sides of the bay feature louvers, able to open and close for ventilation. The bay sits at least 8 feet above the 100-year flood level, providing ample hurricane protection. The second floor, with a bird’s-eye view of the lake, also has space to host special events. The use of stamped concrete, made to look like wood, will be prevalent, cost-effectively enhancing aesthetics. An open layout, the airy balcony and ample sightlines maximize the picturesque setting. Outside, nature trails and elevated walkways will lead to the water’s edge. On the shores of Lake Beresford, there will be docks to launch crew boats with public access and a viewing platform that will overlook the lake. Parking will be limited, and the public areas will be governed by Volusia County park hours. In front of the building, on the end opposite the lakefront, a fountain will serve as a welcome, while a Stetson seal also will provide appropriate adornment. — Michael Candelaria 10

STETSON | Fall 2018

DID YOU KNOW? Stetson and Valencia College in Orlando have signed an articulation agreement that allows students graduating with an associate degree in accounting to seamlessly complete their Bachelor of Business Administration in the accounting program at Stetson’s School of Business Administration — its first such transfer plan. The agreement took effect immediately, with School of Business Administration Dean Neal P. Mero, Ph.D., calling the move a “great example of an excellent public-private partnership in higher education.”

Fulbright to Germany Maeve Coughlin ’17 traveled to Germany on a Stetson Study Abroad trip after her first year in college and enjoyed it so much she changed her major to history. Now, Coughlin is again in Germany — this time on a prestigious Fulbright award to serve as a teaching assistant and cultural ambassador. Coughlin is only the third Stetson student to be selected for the award since 1992, according to the Fulbright website. Funded annually by Congress, the Fulbright program is named after former U.S. Sen. J. William Fulbright, who introduced the bill in 1945 to create a program to foster international education exchange. It operates in more than 140 countries worldwide. Through the program, Coughlin will work as a teaching assistant in two German schools — an elementary school and a high school in Erlangen, north of Nuremburg, in Bavaria — helping students learn about American culture and English language culture. She will work there until June 30, 2019, receiving airfare and a monthly stipend from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, and living in an apartment with a German college student. “It was clear to all of us on the committee that her multifaceted skill set — educator, graphic designer, photographer, writer/storyteller — would serve her well in teaching and in engaging with her host community,” said William Nylen, Ph.D., professor of political science and Stetson’s Fulbright Program adviser. “And her knowledge of German history, language and culture was so impressive!” — Cory Lancaster

Maeve Coughlin ’17 is only the third Stetson student to receive a Fulbright award.

From left: Capt. Joseph Walters, assistant professor of aerospace studies; Col. Jason Patla, detachment commander; and Neal P. Mero, Ph.D., dean and professor of management in Stetson’s School of Business Administration.

Air Force ROTC Lands on Campus Welcome, AFROTC Detachment 157. Stetson and, specifically, the School of Business Administration has partnered with the Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corps to bring its program to the DeLand campus, beginning this fall. AFROTC Detachment 157 is among the largest AFROTC programs and one of the top pilot-producing detachments for the Air Force nationwide. Air Force ROTC is an elective program taken alongside a student’s planned major course of study, designed to give students the opportunity to become Air Force officers while completing their degrees. AFROTC Detachment 157 is hosted at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach. “Stetson’s core values, diversity and tradition of academic excellence offer an outstanding environment for developing future commissioned officers to lead our nation’s Air Force,” said Col. Jason E. Patla, the Detachment Commander. Notably, Neal P. Mero, Ph.D., dean and professor of management in the School of Business Administration, served in the Air Force for more than 22 years. — Marie Dinklage

“Stetson’s core values, diversity and tradition of academic excellence offer an outstanding environment for developing future commissioned officers to lead our nation’s Air Force.” — Col. Jason E. Patla, Detachment Commander

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Professor Michael Denner, Ph.D., director of Stetson’s Honors Program, advises student Ashton Craig.

National Model, Regionally Beginning with the fall semester, 15 students from Daytona State College, plus two others from Valencia College and Seminole State College, arrived at Stetson by virtue of an automatic-admission agreement that could serve as a national model of collaboration in higher education. Under the Stetson-Daytona State College Select Program, students also will receive a Stetson scholarship, resulting in no out-of-pocket costs for tuition and fees. For their part, the students must apply and be accepted on academic merit to Stetson. Exceptions to the agreement, which was signed in 2016, enabled the two students from Valencia and Seminole State to also gain admission. In turn, what’s commonly referred to as the leaky pipeline in higher education is being tightened. Nationally, fewer than one in seven students with an associate degree transfer to a four-year college and earn a baccalaureate degree, according to published data. And even when they do transfer, there typically are multiple academic, social and financial obstacles to overcome. The new Select Program is helping students beat the odds, believes Maggie Karda, chair of the Quanta-Honors College at Daytona State. “It’s such a great opportunity for our students, and they seem uniformly, totally thrilled about being able to go to Stetson,” Karda said. According to Stetson Professor Michael Denner, Ph.D., director of Stetson’s Honors Program, the students’ academic tracks are carefully planned, depending on major. Curricula have been designed to enable students to graduate from the Honors Program in four semesters. Also, extending beyond traditional matriculation agreements, Stetson faculty members begin advising students about course selection from the time they first enroll at Daytona State — providing students with a list of classes they must take to eventually graduate from Stetson. Geographic proximity also plays an important role. Located 20 miles apart, Daytona State and Stetson provide a viable local option for continuing education. Karda points out that although similar agreements are in place across the nation — such as linking veterans at community colleges with selective Ivy Leagues institutions, on a limited basis — this program can be duplicated regionally nationwide. “It’s a realistic option for people who live here,” Karda said. “In terms of a model for how most communities can function, I think this is a better one.” — Michael Candelaria 12

STETSON | Fall 2018

Mastering the CPA Exam The numbers are impressive any way you count them. Stetson students with a master’s degree taking the Uniform Certified Public Accountant exam in 2017 had the highest overall pass rate in Florida (80 percent), according to the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy. Stetson also was fourth in the state for the overall pass rate (60 percent) and fifth in the state for pass rates of first-time takers (61.1 percent), out of the 27 higher education institutions in Florida that had current or former students taking the test. The achievement represents value at Stetson, commented Valrie Chambers, Ph.D., associate professor of taxation and accounting. “Being recognized by the NASBA 2017 Institution Rankings is a significant indicator of the quality of the accounting programs at Stetson because most of the 252 small programs are not publicly ranked,” said Chambers, also chair of Stetson’s M.E. Rinker Sr. Institute for Tax and Accountancy. Those results come on the heels of the university’s recent announcement detailing a new tax-track specialization and new hybrid and online delivery formats for the Master of Accountancy program. — Marie Dinklage

Ms. JD Fellow Stetson College of Law third-year student Brielle Tucker is now a Ms. JD Fellow — making her only the second student from Stetson to earn that national distinction. Ms. JD is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to the success of aspiring and early-career women lawyers. It was founded at Stanford Law School in 2006 by a group of female law students and today serves as a nexus between the profession and the pipeline of diverse attorneys, providing a forum for dialogue and networking among women lawyers and law students with campus chapters nationwide. This year, Ms. JD awarded fellowships to nine law students from across the United States, selected for their academic performance, leadership and dedication to advancing the status of women in the profession. Tucker, a member of both Stetson’s nationally ranked Moot Court and Trial Team, was named a regional finalist at the 2018 National Appellate Advocacy Competition. She is a Stetson Ambassador who has served as a representative on the Student Bar

Association and as subregional director of the Southern Region Black Law Students Association. Tucker is an alumna of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, which helps to advance the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need, and she graduated cum laude from the University Brielle Tucker is only the second of Tampa. Originally from student from Stetson to be named Washington, D.C., she was as a Ms. JD Fellow. a congressional intern during high school at The Madeira School. “I hope to foster a sense of support among women within the legal profession,” Tucker said, simply. — Brandi Palmer


Philanthropic Leader Set to Retire

In the second game of the football season in September, the Hatters established three major offensive school records in a 63-34 win over visiting Waldorf. The Hatters amassed 570 yards in total offense, surpassing the previous team mark of 555, which was set against Butler in 2014. They scored nine touchdowns in the game, eclipsing the previous record of eight in 2015 against Ave Maria University. And the Hatters’ 63 points bested the previous high of 60 against Ave Maria.

Linda Parson Davis ’73 is retiring on Jan. 31, 2019, following 41 years of service to Stetson. Yet, Davis didn’t actually work a day during that time, she asserts without hesitation. “It always felt like a calling to me,” Davis notes. Such is life — and a career — when one spends more than four decades at her alma mater — the same university from which her parents, husband, son and daughter-in-law, and sister-in-law all graduated. Coming out of high school, Davis didn’t even apply to another school. Stetson was a virtual rite of passage. Through the years on campus, Davis held numerous positions of leadership in alumni relations and development, with titles that included Director of Alumni Programs, Director of Development, Associate Vice President for Planned Giving, Vice President for University Relations and her current role, Special Advisor to the President for Philanthropy. Davis’ time at Stetson has spanned four university presidencies and resulted in widespread goodwill on campus and across Hatter Nation. Davis remembers being the first hire, in 1978, of a new vice president at the time, H. Douglas Lee, who later became the university’s president. Davis also recalls being interviewed by then-President Pope Duncan. The job was for coordinator of alumni programs. At the time, Davis thought, “Why so much attention on a lower-level position?” Turns out, there were visions of building something special in the alumni office — and Davis was the one to begin making those things happen. “It’s been a great run,” she concludes. “I’ve been so blessed.” — Michael Candelaria Editor’s Note: See Parting Shot, Page 67.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



‘Exceptional Season’ The DeLand City Commission congratulated the Stetson baseball team in September for an “Exceptional Season” and presented the university with bases from Melching Field at Conrad Park, where the Hatters won the 2018 NCAA DeLand Regional Tournament and advanced to the NCAA Super Regional Tournament for the first time in school history. The City Proclamation reads: “Whereas, the DeLand City Commission is honored to give this special recognition and congratulations to Coach Steve Trimper, the coaching staff and all members of the Stetson Baseball Team on a successful 2018 season; and “Whereas, the Stetson Hatters were ranked in all five major national polls, had a RPI ranking of 4th at season’s end, won the ASUN regular season title, and won the conference tournament, the first team in school history to win both the regular season and tournament championships; and “Whereas, the Stetson Hatters’ outstanding record qualified the program to host a NCAA regional for the first time in school history and the Hatters won the DeLand Regional in convincing fashion; and “Whereas, Stetson ended its season with a record of 48-13 matching the most wins in school history and while disappointed to lose in the Super Regional had chances in both games to win the games in the 9th inning; “Whereas, Stetson owned the nation’s longest winning streak entering the Super Regional; and “Whereas, numerous individual honors were bestowed upon the baseball program this year clearly demonstrating the exceptional talent and productivity of the members of the team and six team members were drafted in the 2018 MLB draft; and “Whereas, each player recognized that their success was dependent upon the concept of team and that the success of this year’s team has been forged around teamwork; and “Whereas, DeLand is proud to be the home of Stetson University; and “Whereas, the DeLand City Commission commends each team member for their contributions to the success of this year’s team. We also offer our congratulations to Steve Trimper and his coaching staff who have motivated these athletes to excel on the field and in the classroom. “Now, therefore, I, Robert F. Apgar, Mayor of the City of DeLand, do hereby proclaim June 10, 2018, as Stetson Baseball Exceptional Season Day… .”


STETSON | Fall 2018

Hatter Baseball won recognition from the DeLand City Commission. From left: City Manager and Stetson alumnus Michael Pleus, ’94, M.B.A. ’99; City Commissioner Chris Cloudman, an energy specialist at Stetson; Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D.; Stetson baseball coach Steve Trimper; DeLand Mayor Bob Apgar; Jeff Altier, director of Athletics at Stetson; City Commissioner Jessica Davis; City Commissioner Charles Paiva; and DeLand Vice Mayor Leigh Matusick.

DID YOU KNOW? Stetson’s Greater Central Florida Tech Faire + Hackathon continues to rise in prominence. Most recently, it received a $2,000 grant from the Orlando Technology Community Support Pilot Program, an initiative by the City of Orlando to give a jumpstart to efforts that boost entrepreneurs. Each year, the Greater Central Florida Tech Faire + Hackathon draws interest from hundreds of college and high school students. At the event last spring, the two winners of the Apple-created “Capture the Flag” security challenge received interviews with Apple, among other prizes. Apple’s presence was viewed as an especially big deal by Stetson computer science professors, who host the event. The next Hackathon is slated for next spring.

Tim Elgren, Ph.D.

New Water Feature on Horizon When Troy Templeton, a double-Hatter and former university Trustee, and his wife, Sissy, saw the two-story wall of glass in the new Commons Dining Hall, they knew the spot outside could become a scenic gathering place on campus. They envisioned a water feature in the landscaped area being added east of the renovated Carlton Union Building. Thanks to their generosity, that water feature is now on the way — to be installed beside the green space, east of the CUB, by March 2019. Called a “dry deck fountain,” the water feature’s surface will slope gently to drain and collect water from the jets. Then, pumps and filters will recycle the water, with water lost only due to evaporation. The Templetons — who also support the Stetson Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative, which sponsors the Templeton Case Competition each spring — wanted a modern design with jets of water coming out of the ground, colored lights and speakers for sound. With input from students and staff, the current design shows 41 jets of water, reaching heights of 15 feet and set in a 22-foot-wide surface bearing the seal of Stetson. “We asked the design team to be creative, think more Disney World and less standard water fountain,” said Troy Templeton, ’82, ’83 M.B.A., a managing partner in a private equity and venture capital firm in Coral Gables, Florida. “Sissy and I met at Stetson, and a large part of our success is due to the opportunities that Stetson provided me. As a result, we are very pleased that we can pay it forward, and continue to be able to help Stetson continue its strong growth and make our campus as beautiful as our education programs are strong.” — Cory Lancaster

Expect 41 jets of water, reaching heights of 15 feet, according to the water feature’s current design. “Think more Disney World,” said the benefactor.

Expanding Health and Science Tim Elgren, Ph.D., was preparing to go on sabbatical from his work as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Oberlin College when he heard Stetson was looking to expand its health and science programs. Not long afterward, Elgren, also a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Oberlin, was named Stetson’s special advisor on strategic initiatives and is charged with overseeing a yearlong effort to develop a framework for new science programs at Stetson. His appointment follows an $18 million donation in April from longtime Stetson Trustees Cici and Hyatt Brown to construct a new science building on the DeLand campus. With the gift, the university hopes to improve health in western Volusia County, expand partnerships for the benefit of students in health and science, examine its offerings in health, and explore new interdisciplinary opportunities for undergraduates. Elgren played a role in expanding the sciences at Hamilton College in upstate New York, where he was for 21 years — rising to the rank of professor of chemistry and serving as associate dean of the faculty. The private liberal arts college, with 1,900 undergraduates, opened a $56 million science center in 2005. Elgren will focus on “what the frontiers are for growth and what those opportunities are in the areas of science and particularly health sciences. That may be forging partnerships. It may be building curriculum. It may be building buildings,” he said. — Cory Lancaster

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



‘A Great Learning Experience’ Twenty years later, the making of an uncommon undergraduate research symposium proves worthy of celebration. BY KEVIN RIGGS, PH.D.


tetson Showcase was conceived 20 years ago to enable students at the university to present their undergraduate scholarship in the form of mentored senior projects, creative works and performances, off-campus internships, and community-based service-learning projects to the larger Stetson community.

Historically, most academic programs at Stetson have required senior capstone presentations in their own departments. However, the students were generally speaking to faculty and students with similar expertise to their own. The Showcase, on the other hand, gives students the experience of presenting to the larger academic community and explaining their research or creative project in a way that is understandable to nonexperts. In my view, the experiment has been a success. Steadily expanding during the past two decades, the springtime event has proved to be especially popular throughout Stetson, from Sage Hall to the Lynn Business Center and numerous points in between. And, while campuswide undergraduate-research symposiums were relatively rare when Stetson Showcase was started, today they are growing rapidly at diverse institutions of higher learning across the country. Coincidence? Maybe not — at least I’d like to think so. Grady Ballenger, Ph.D., former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and current professor of English, arrived at Stetson in 1998. In one of his first initiatives as dean, he asked for faculty volunteers to organize a new campuswide undergraduate-research symposium. I vividly recall sitting in the faculty meeting when we were discussing the idea of creating such a symposium and thinking to myself that this could be a great learning experience for our students. It has turned out that way. I had some experience in organizing undergraduate-research symposiums while on sabbatical at the Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory. So, I decided to volunteer to lead the 16

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effort as the founding chair of the Stetson Undergraduate Research Committee. At the time, I also was active at the national level in a great organization known as the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), both in the physics/astronomy division and later in the undergraduate research program director division. During my time in CUR, I participated on numerous panel presentations and workshops at national CUR conferences, and offered advice on how to organize an undergraduate research symposium at colleges and universities similar to Stetson. In the early years, it was definitely a struggle to establish the idea of a research symposium, and to obtain the buy-in from faculty and students. It was even difficult to find an appropriate name. The event began as the Undergraduate Scholarship and Performance Day, but the acronym USAPD sounded suspiciously like some kind of national police force. We went through several other name changes and permutations, many with equally unfortunate acronyms, before settling on the current and much more descriptive and straightforward “Stetson Showcase” (no more acronyms please). To compound the logistical difficulties, the event initially was held on a day when the normal class schedule was in effect. Thankfully, this no longer is the case. We now cancel classes on the day of Showcase each spring, as we do for the equally important Values Day celebration in the fall. After leading the effort for 10 years, I turned the event over to our current Undergraduate Research Committee chairperson, Kimberly Reiter, Ph.D., associate professor of history. Of course, both of us have relied on the enthusiastic support of fellow committee members, administrators, support staff, judges, student assistants and, particularly, the increased interest among student presenters to ensure success. The event just keeps getting bigger and better. We started in 1998 with roughly 40 posters and presentations, mostly submitted by science majors. I was quoted in the student paper, expressing hope that we could eventually double that number. We have now gone well beyond that relatively modest start, with more than 250 posters, presentations, musical performances, art exhibits, business-course project presentations and honors program service-learning project group presentations submitted in 2018.

Photo by Bobby Fishbough

In addition, although there still is plenty of science represented, there also are oral-presentation sessions with themes ranging from art and digital arts exhibitions, and Ars Gratia Artis (art for art’s sake), to race, gender, sex, protest and justice, along with business. It doesn’t seem possible that we have just marked 20 years of wonderful undergraduate-research presentations. The current support of the Stetson community for Showcase is highly gratifying, and the sophistication of the projects presented never fails to impress our Maris prize-judging panels, which consist of volunteers from the ranks of our current and retired faculty, along with outside community leaders. This past spring, more than 30 judges were required to decide the top Maris prize honors (cash awards) and honorable mentions at three separate poster sessions and eight oral-presentation sessions. Our evening Showcase banquet also is emblematic of growth. Each year, we recognize the Maris prize winners and other awardees at this banquet, which now bears Grady Ballenger’s name. This spring, our very own Sarah Caudill ’06 (physics), now carrying Ph.D. on her name, was the keynote speaker. Back at the 2006 version of Stetson Showcase, Sarah presented her research on gravitational-wave physics using the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), completed as a summer intern at the California Institute of Technology. Her poster, “LIGO Detection Efficiency Studies in Searches for Gravitational Waves from Binary Neutron Star Inspirals,” won an

What started in 1998 with roughly 40 posters and presentations now showcases more than 250 posters, presentations, musical performances, art exhibits, business-course project presentations and honors program service-learning project group presentations, describes Kevin Riggs, Ph.D.

honorable-mention that year. In 2015, gravitational waves were directly detected by LIGO, and the project leaders won the Nobel Prize in physics for the discovery in 2017. The entire LIGO research team, including Sarah, won the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics in 2016. Most heartening of all for me, in 2017 two neutron stars were detected colliding — just as Sarah’s undergraduate project had anticipated. These days, Sarah is a research scientist at the Dutch National Institute for Subatomic Physics (Nikhef). In addition to Stetson Showcase, our undergraduate-research committee supervises the Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE), an on-campus internship program where students are paid a stipend to work with a faculty mentor during the summer. One of the requirements of the program is for SURE grant recipients to present their research at Stetson Showcase. This past year, for the first time, we invited many of the previous SURE grant recipients to send in their photos and current career titles, and we featured them in the Showcase program. After 20 years, highlighting past students — now widely successful alumni — seemed like just the right way to celebrate. Kevin Riggs, Ph.D., is a professor of physics and chair of the Department of Physics at Stetson University. Riggs has an active research program that uses laser-based holographic techniques to image the vibration patterns of various musical instruments. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Shan Karemani ’19 called his trip to Kosovo an “eye-opening experience.”

Passion Pursuit The Michael Raymond Beyond the Classroom Grant is giving Stetson juniors the opportunity to learn, discover and “catch fire.” BY JACK ROTH


ichael W. Raymond, Ph.D., professor of English at Stetson until his death in 2007, believed that higher education was an opportunity for students to discover their passions. His message to undergraduates at Stetson: “The university exists as a sanctuary and a crucible, a place to learn to love the process of learning, and to catch fire with an intellectual passion that will sustain you for the rest of your life.”


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To honor his vision of education and commitment to students, the Michael Raymond Beyond the Classroom Grant was established and designed to help Stetson juniors pursue dreams and passions through academic discovery. Juniors can apply for $1,000 to do anything they want during the summer — not directly connected to their classroom studies. Andy Dehnart, the grant’s administrator, explained that the money gives students an opportunity to perhaps think outside the box or, simply, follow up on an interest. “Some students just want time and space to create as artists,” said Dehnart, also a visiting assistant professor of journalism at Stetson. “All of that falls under this umbrella of giving students a chance to do something that interests them or that they are passionate about.

No one is requiring them to do this; it just comes from internal love and commitment.” Every year since 2008, the endowed grant has provided $1,000 for a winner and $500 for a runner-up. To qualify, a student must be a junior returning to Stetson in the fall. A committee makes selections based on applications. There were 36 applicants in the 2017-2018 school year. “Raymond, both as a faculty member and a student at Stetson before that, was passionate about learning — but not just in a classroom,” added Dehnart, a student of Raymond’s while attending Stetson. “This self-exploration is part of Stetson’s educational experience. The school gives people a fantastic education if they simply move through their requirements and general education of their major, but their real learning, the real growth as people, comes from stepping outside of that.” The grant dollars are not enough to transform lives, but they are helping open doors for students. During summer 2017, with the help of a $500 grant, Emma Boswell ’18 traveled to Wales and Dublin in Ireland, working with adults who have developmental disabilities. At the time a Bonner Scholar majoring in elementary education, Boswell already was planning the trip to St. David’s Care in the Community in Dublin; the extra funds proved helpful. So was the experience. By day, Boswell taught art and dance, among others. At night, she assisted with general care. “It was unlike anything I’ve really done before,” Boswell said, adding this takeaway lesson: “No act is too small; Emma Boswell ’18 no amount of love is not felt and recognized.” Similarly, Raisa Bailon ’18 traveled to Guatemala to help with reforestation as the first-prize winner. This summer, Shan Karemani ’19, a double major in political science and Russian studies, traveled to Kosovo to interview people and connect with his parents’ home country. He now is editing a documentary about his findings. “It was an eye-opening experience,” Karemani said. “I learned a lot about the Kosovo War from those who actually lived through it. I spoke with family members, friends and even strangers. Moreover, I was able to travel to different cities and significant locations to collect stories from people of all walks of life. Also, in my free time, I visited Montenegro and Albania.” The second grant recipient, Samantha Rheaume ’19, a psychology major, worked with traumatic-brain-injury victims and their families at Krempels Center in New Hampshire, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of people living with brain injury.

“I got to put all the theories and methods I have learned in my classes into practice and further my education in a way that would not have been possible without the Beyond the Classroom Grant.” — Samantha Rheaume ’19

“I got hands-on experience working in the mental health setting while running support groups for brain-injury survivors and their families,” Rheaume said. “I got to put all the theories and methods I have learned in my classes into practice and further my education in a way that would not have been possible without the Beyond the Classroom Grant. My clients showed me the real tenacity and strength of human nature, and I learned not only how to be a better clinician, but a better person.” During his 35 years teaching at Stetson, Michael Raymond influenced many students. His wife, Judy, has been a big part of developing and administering the grant. They met as 16-year-old students at Oak Ridge High School in Orlando. Today, she believes the grant is an extension of her late husband’s devotion to Stetson: “Stetson came to me with the idea for the grant, and I thought it was perfect. I’ve been amazed at the number of donations that have come in over the years. They come from everywhere, which tells me that Michael’s passion for learning was not lost with his passing.” With the amount of grant applicants continuing to increase, she and her oldest son, Eric Raymond, read each application, as do other members of the grant’s committee. “Michael always said that knowledge is power, and he would have been thrilled to pieces about this,” Judy Raymond concluded. “Seeing these students being able to accumulate knowledge outside of the classroom and expand their horizons would have made him very happy.” Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


VIM AND VIBRATO Clyde T. Shaw ’73 reflects on his career odyssey as a world-traveling cellist.



s a founding member of the Audubon Quartet, cellist Clyde T. Shaw ’73 toured the world. Shaw, who goes by Tom, swigged “rot gut”

toasts and told Russian jokes to Chinese dignitaries wearing Mao jackets. He swam in piranha-infested waters in Suriname. He played under the glare of machine gun-toting guards in Colombia. Also, the string quartet performed at the White House for President Jimmy Carter and visiting Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin.

“We were pretty cheeky. We were these young Americans, thinking we were going to set the world on fire,” Shaw said with a hearty laugh as he reflected on the early days, the group’s trip to France in 1977. There, they participated in the Festival d’Evian and became the first American group to win a prize in an international string quartet competition. “That was my first trip to Europe,” Shaw added by phone from his home in Winchester, Virginia, where he lives with his wife and fellow former Audubon Quartet member, violist Doris Lederer. “I was gawking at everything. It was incredible.” Shaw’s laughter — and the fact that he refers to himself as a “Florida Cracker” — suggest the wisdom of age (he’s now 69) has led him to regard the pluck and naiveté of his younger self with bemusement. But the quartet, indeed, set the classical music world on fire. Shaw received his bachelor’s degree from Stetson’s School of Music in 1973 and co-founded the Audubon Quartet a year later. The quartet made its Carnegie Hall debut in 1976. After excelling at Festival d’Evian, the group won the gold medal a few months later at the Festival Villa-Lobos in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In 1979, the group became the first American string quartet to perform on the newly launched “CBS News Sunday Morning” TV show, hosted by Charles Kuralt. In 1981, Shaw and his mates became the first American string quartet to perform in China. The quartet performed the world premiere of 25 compositions, and the group recorded for such prestigious labels as RCA, Telarc and Centaur. After a 37-year run, the quartet officially retired in 2011.

Clyde T. Shaw (on left) performed at the White House (1977) during his career as a member of the Audubon Quartet. Performance journeys also took him to Europe, South America and China. He toured China in 1981 and returned in 2016 to teach master classes (below).

FIRST STRINGS Shaw’s musical odyssey began as a youngster growing up in Winter Park, Florida, near Orlando. “My father was a ‘geetar’ picker,” Shaw said, playfully and intentionally using a countrified pronunciation of “guitar.” “On Fridays when he would come home from work, he would have friends come over with their guitars. They would pluck and sing and carry on, and I really wanted to do that myself.” In the fourth grade, Shaw discovered a violin under his parents’ bed. The instrument had belonged to his grandfather, although he had played trombone and not the violin. “In elementary school, some nice lady came by and said, ‘Would anybody like to play the violin? And, of course, in my ADD [Attention Deficit Disorder] manner, I jumped up out of my desk and said, ‘Me! Me!’” Shaw recalled. “So, I started taking lessons.” With the local school district rich in music education, Shaw switched to cello in junior high at the invitation of a teacher. “I didn’t know the first thing about it, but it seemed natural to me and I just went at it,” he said. While other young people were enthralled by the appearance of the Beatles on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1964, Shaw “realized I needed to start studying cello seriously.” He became principal cellist in the orchestra at Winter Park High School, and in his senior year he began taking private lessons from Eleanor Leek Smith, professor of violin, cello and theory at Stetson. While attending Stetson in 1966-1967 as a first-year student on full scholarship, Shaw discovered his love for the small-ensemble works of chamber music, especially the music of Beethoven, by exploring the school’s music library. After that academic year, he transferred to the Oberlin College Conservatory and completed two years of study there. When Shaw returned to Florida in 1972, he reached out to Paul Langston, who was still dean of Stetson’s School of Music. With Leek on sabbatical, Langston invited Shaw to serve as an interim cello teacher and perform in the Stetson Faculty Consort while completing his Bachelor of Music degree. Not long afterward, Shaw co-founded the Audubon Quartet at the 1974 session of the Lenox Quartet Chamber Music Seminar in Binghamton, New York.

Then Shaw returned to Stetson with the Audubon Quartet in January 1974 to perform the Schumann Piano Quintet with Langston as guest pianist. “It was so wonderful for me as a cellist to look over the stand on the piano and see Paul [Dean Langston] sweating bullets over there,” Shaw said with another robust laugh. “There are some nice riffs in there for the piano. I loved him. He was a dear man. He was a brilliant man. He was a gentleman. He gave me life, as it were, and I’m eternally grateful for that.”

ASCENSION AND ADVENTURE The quartet’s French prize in ’77 led to the invitation to perform at the White House. Shaw recounts: “In those days, we were driving a Chevy van, and we drove down to Washington, D.C., and pulled up in the driveway of the White House. I swear to God that’s what we did. It wasn’t like all the security stuff you see in the news today. “That afternoon, we were asked to play for a tea that Mrs. Carter was giving Mrs. Begin. We felt a little bit ‘Ummmm, we don’t like to play for people who talk and carry on as we’re playing’ (laughs). But in the evening, we played a formal concert.” Later in 1977 at a Munich competition, Shaw and his Audubon mates crossed paths with the Daniel Quartet, an Israeli group. When the Americans mentioned performing for Begin, the Israelis began to laugh. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


Shaw and composer Peter Schickele share a laugh during rehearsal of the composer’s new composition String Quartet No. 1 “American Dreams.” The Audubon Quartet played the work at Stetson shortly before performing its official world premiere at Alice Tully Hall in New York City on April 1, 1984.

“We asked why they were laughing,” Shaw said. “Their violist quickly, and without reserve, said, ‘Begin hates classical music!’ Boy, that took the air out of our tires.” For the Audubon Quartet’s groundbreaking three-week tour of China in 1981, at the invitation of the Chinese Ministry of Culture, Shaw and his colleagues performed and taught at a conservatory where “all the faculty members were dressed in their Mao jackets. It had this odd feeling of something from the past. It was an amazing experience,” Shaw described. “There was a lot of partying — we were invited to dinner with this faculty member or that official to different places. They had this rot-gut ceremonial alcohol that tasted like a mixture of kerosene and snake oil. It was god-awful stuff. And they loved to toast.” Shaw learned the Chinese had an enmity for the Russians, and so he would tell jokes to the head of the conservatory and substitute the Russians as the target. While touring in Suriname, the quartet took a break by going on a day trip down a river. While eating, he tossed a few breadcrumbs out of the boat. A mistake. Piranhas were in the water. Ignoring the possibility that fingers eaten to the bone by flesh-eating fish might inhibit his career, Shaw went swimming anyway. “I’m an adventurer,” Shaw said, laughing. The quartet’s tour of Colombia, with the nation torn by armed conflict among various factions, was both sobering and heart-lifting. Armed guards escorted the quartet throughout the country as they traveled in a bulletproof van. “I thought, ‘This is so contrary to anything we’re trying to do with music — holy mackerel!’” Shaw said. Yet, his perspective changed when the Audubon Quartet performed at the rural mountain town that was home to renowned Colombian violinist Frank Preuss, who taught the local children about Beethoven and other classical composers. The quartet was asked to play for the children. They performed on the grounds — literally — beside an ancient Catholic church in the middle of the little town. Shaw’s words: 22

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“On this dirt floor, all these little children were sitting around, legs folded underneath them. Dogs would come by, and they were sitting around as well (laughs). “When we announced that we were going to play Beethoven, the children’s eyes got huge. They were so excited. It brings tears to my eyes. That was one of the most amazing experiences we had.” Stetson scored a coup in early 1984, when the Audubon Quartet performed composer Peter Schickele’s String Quartet No. 1 “American Dreams” at the university — shortly before the quartet performed the official world premiere of the work at Alice Tully Hall in New York City on April 1, 1984. In the early 2000s, Shaw and two other members of the quartet had a falling out with the fourth member, the first violinist, which led to his dismissal. The first violinist sued and won a $611,000 judgment from the other three members after a legal battle lasting more than half a decade, according to a New York Times report. The Audubon Quartet regrouped with a new member and soldiered on until calling it a day in August 2011. Shaw then accepted a full professorship at Shenandoah University Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia, until he retired with emeritus rank earlier this year. The odyssey had come to an end. “My dream became a reality,” Shaw said simply of his globetrotting adventures.

DID YOU KNOW? Upon retirement, Tom Shaw (shown on left) took a DNA ancestry test and discovered he had a relative who also was a Stetson alumnus: Jack A. Shaw ’53, a history major who went on to become a Baptist minister and later a teacher and counselor at Gainesville (Florida) High School. “My third great-grandfather, Daniel K. Shaw, and Tom’s fifth great-grandfather, Jeremiah Shaw Jr., were brothers,” Jack Shaw said in an email from his home in Spring Hill, Tennessee. After communicating by phone and email, the two relatives met for the first time on July 22, 2018, in Charlottesville, Virginia. “He’s a lively, wonderful gentleman,” Tom Shaw said. “He’s 92 years old, and he was so vivacious when I saw him, full of stories.” “It was a wonderful meeting, and we talked about our ancestors and our present families,” Jack Shaw said. “We did not want the time to end.”


Roll of Distinction Concert Southern Winds Band 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Complimentary Admission

Nov. 11

Hall of Fame 4 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Complimentary Admission

Nov. 13

Sounds New XXI | First Glimpse An evening of world premieres, written and performed by School of Music students. 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Complimentary Admission

Nov. 14

Guitar on the Rocks 7:30 p.m., Presser Hall Complimentary Admission

Jan. 29

Great Organists at Stetson series Pamela Ruiter-Feenstra, organ 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Complimentary Admission Information: stetson.edu/music/calendar.

EXHIBITIONS Through Dec. 7

Alumni Focus: Sean Erwin Samson Hall, Stetson Sean Erwin received an M.F.A. from the University of South Florida in 2008 and a B.A. in studio art from Stetson in 2004. Erwin, an adjunct professor at Stetson, creates a narrative with his art as a way of understanding the human condition and those experiences that define our personal identities.

Nov. 20

Stetson Choral Union Sandra Peter, conductor Haydn Missa in Angustiis (Lord Nelson Mass) 7:30 p.m., First Baptist Church, DeLand Tickets available at the door: $10 adult, $5 youth (13-plus), free with Stetson ID

Jan. 18

Great Guitarists at Stetson series Amadeus Guitar Duo Dale Kavanagh and Thomas Kirchhoff, guitars 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Complimentary Admission

THEATER Nov. 15-17, 8 p.m.; Nov. 18, 3 p.m. SWEAT by Lynn Nottage Second Stage Theatre Filled with warm humor and tremendous heart, SWEAT tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets and laughs while working together on the factory floor.

April 11-13, 8 p.m.; April 14, 3 p.m.

“Pheromone,” Ceramic Sculpture, Sean Erwin

2018 Christmas Candlelight Concerts Nov. 28-30

Orlando Concert 7:30 p.m., First United Methodist Church (142 E. Jackson St., Orlando)

Information: stetson.edu/hand-art-center.

[title of show] with Music by Jeff Bowen and Book by Hunter Bell Second Stage Theatre Jeff and Hunter, two self-confessed nobodies in New York, make a pact: They will write an original musical and submit it to a festival. The only catch? The deadline is in three weeks. No worries, though. They’ll just write a musical about writing a musical.

Stetson Symphony Orchestra 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall Tickets available at the door: $10 adult, $5 youth (13-plus), free with Stetson ID

Dec. 1

29th Annual Undergraduate Juried Exhibit Hand Art Center, Stetson This is designed to celebrate students’ creativity, as well as grow their imagination and encourage their exploration of the arts. All Stetson students, regardless of major, are able to participate.

Feb. 14-16 and Feb. 21-23, 8 p.m. Feb. 17 and Feb. 24, 3 p.m.

Nov. 16

DeLand Concerts 7:30 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall

Through Dec. 7

Through Dec. 7

Oscar Bluemner: Color Sketches Hand Art Center, Stetson During 1910-1911, Oscar Bluemner intensified his longtime practice of regular sketching expeditions in the countryside. The discovery of a new type of vivid colored pencils enabled him to put into practice his growing conviction that expressive color was the most important element in art. The drawings in this exhibition demonstrate Bluemner’s rapid assimilation of the various strands of Post-Impressionism.

The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde Second Stage Theatre Jack Worthing has invented an alter ego named Ernest in order to court and win over the lovely Gwendolen. Unbeknownst to Jack, his good friend Algernon has adopted the same disguise so that he might have an opportunity to meet the lovely young Cecily. When all four characters flee to the country, disguises are revealed, and hilarity ensues.

Information: stetson.edu/other/academics/ programs/theatre-arts.php.

Pictured at right: “Lodi,” 1911, Oscar Bluemner

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


Archiving Lore Scrapbooks, chimes, a winning sweater and a regal wave from Desmond Tutu capture heritage and history through the decades. By Kelly Larson

Gi ft Ledger (1883-1939) Stetson’s early financial records were meticulously maintained in ledger books still preserved by the university archives. This notebook, labeled “Gifts,” lists every philanthropic contribution from 1883 through the 1930s. John B. Stetson’s frequent and sizable donations, all recorded in the ledger, help to explain why DeLand Academy was renamed John B. Stetson University in 1889. The ledger also shows that, in addition to the Stetson family, the early university was sustained by many other benefactors, including Henry DeLand, C.T. Sampson, Henry Flagler, Andrew Carnegie and “the citizens of DeLand.”

Early Commencement (1893) Given the university’s age, many are surprised to learn that Stetson was coeducational from the beginning. In fact, Stetson’s first collegiate graduate was a young woman named Leila May Child. As late as the 1890s, the university consisted of both a “College Department” and an “Academy.” The academy, which was a preparatory program, boasted far more students than the college did in the early years. It took until 1893 for Stetson to graduate its first student from the college, and as the commencement program shows, Leila May Child was the only college graduate that year. The preparatory program was discontinued in 1927.


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Hulley for Governor (1920)

Hatters Baseball (1900) Baseball has long been a feature of the athletics program at Stetson. In this photograph, Stetson baseball players pose for a group photo in Chicago. Stetson was formally affiliated with the University of Chicago from 1898 to 1910, an arrangement that allowed Stetson faculty and students to complete coursework at the University of Chicago free of charge and vice versa. Additionally, Stetson students who completed at least 12 weeks of coursework at Chicago were awarded a University of Chicago diploma. The affiliation strengthened Stetson’s curriculum, maximized its college enrollment and garnered prestige. Many Stetson undergraduates took advantage of the affiliation, and DeLand saw an influx of students from the University of Chicago during the winter term.

Lincoln Hulley served the longest term of any Stetson president, from 1904 until his death in 1934. During his tenure, Hulley was responsible for leading the stillbudding university through World War I and the Great Depression, and it was under Hulley that Stetson came into its own. Stetson’s campus expanded to include Cummings Gymnasium, Stover Theater and Sampson Hall; enrollment increased; Stetson gained accreditation; and the university dropped its preparatory program (the “academy”) altogether. A gifted man of letters, Hulley was known for his sermons, lectures, plays and poetry. He served two terms in the Florida Senate before running unsuccessfully for governor in 1920.

Eloise Chimes (1915) Named for President Lincoln Hulley’s wife, the Eloise Chimes are 11 solid bronze bells, ranging in weight from 575 to 3,000 pounds. They were originally mounted in the cupola of Elizabeth Hall and later transferred to Hulley Tower. The Eloise Chimes colored many heartfelt memories of campus, as the bells were played each morning and evening, as well as for special events, by students from the School of Music. When Hulley Tower was dismantled due to weather damage in 2005, the Eloise Chimes found new homes throughout the campus and at various locations in DeLand. This one now resides behind the Meadows Alumni House.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


Willard Anderson’s Letterman Sweater (1938) Willard Anderson kicked the winning field goal against the University of Florida in 1938. Led by beloved football coach Brady Cowell, the Hatters defeated the Gators in Gainesville, 16-14. The victory so excited the Stetson community that, upon returning to DeLand, a crowd roused President Sims Allen from his sleep and convinced him to join in the revelry by lighting a celebratory bonfire. Anderson’s letterman sweater bears the Stetson S, indicating his inclusion in the “S” Club, an athletics organization for varsity lettermen. The Women’s Athletic Association served Stetson’s female athletes.

College of Law’s New Home (1957) Stetson Law’s Class of 1957 poses for a group photo at the newly acquired Gulfport campus. Founded in 1900, Stetson University College of Law was Florida’s first law school and became the first to admit women in 1905. The law school moved from Flagler Hall on the DeLand campus to the grounds of the historic Hotel Rolyat resort in 1954. Sparked by a postwar boom in enrollment, the move launched a period of expansion, academic excellence and growing prestige under Dean Harold Sebring.

Rosemary Clark Scrapbook (1940s-1950s) This beautifully crafted trove of clippings, photographs, postcards, programs, letters, cards and other keepsakes was compiled by Stetson graduate Rosemary Clark and recently accessioned by the Stetson University Archives & Special Collections. Rosemary Clark graduated with honors from the Stetson School of Music in 1940 and remained close to the university as a faculty member and performer. She later opened her own school, The Rosemary Clark Conservatory of Music, in DeLand. Her scrapbook is a testament to the close ties among Clark, Stetson and DeLand, as well as an intimate portrait of the School of Music in the 1940s and ’50s.


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Rat Week (1964) These green beanies were given to incoming students during Rat Week, a tradition of initiation among Stetson first-year students that began in the 1940s and carried on into the early ’60s. The “rats,” as those new students were known, were identified by these green caps and subjected to a number of lighthearted humiliations, including but not limited to: bowing before upperclassmen, reciting the “rat pledge,” trimming the campus lawn with a pair of shears, and adhering to a dress code that had young women wearing their skirts insideout and upside-down. Though hazing was expressly forbidden in the early years of the university, and Stetson’s current zero-tolerance policy would never allow such shenanigans, alumni remember Rat Week with great fondness.

Centennial Celebration (1982-1983)

Afro-American Society (1971) Stetson integrated in 1962, and the university’s first African-American student, Cornelius Hunter, graduated in 1966. By 1971, the Stetson Afro-American Society was formally established. The organization served an important social function for its members, as well as providing them a forum to discuss matters related to integration at Stetson and a platform for working with the administration to enact desired changes. This scrapbook, from the 1970-1971 school year, documents early SAAS activities with newspaper clippings, programs, photographs and other ephemera, offering an intimate glimpse into a crucial chapter of Stetson’s history.

One of Florida’s oldest universities, Stetson was already celebrating its 100th birthday by 1983. The Centennial celebration began in the fall of 1982, with a special convocation led by Chancellor J. Ollie Edmunds (former Stetson president) to open Stetson’s 100th year. Centennial events were held throughout the year, and a variety of mementos were specially produced for the milestone, including this Centennial Celebration Medallion.

Hats Off (1991) Human-rights activist and Nobel Peace laureate Desmond Tutu is one among many world-class speakers to visit Stetson, sponsored by the Institute for Christian Ethics. Tutu donned a Stetson cowboy hat (a gift from the university) as he addressed hundreds of students at Elizabeth Chapel. “I have always wanted a Stetson hat,” he said, before going on to speak about the Persian Gulf War, foreign policy and Christian theology. Jimmy Carter, Elie Wiesel, Jane Goodall and Bill Moyers also visited Stetson in the 1990s and early 2000s.

Commodore PET 4008 (1980) Long before the Chromebooks, MacBooks, tablets and smartphones, the Commodore PET (Personal Electronic Transactor) was a topselling computer on college campuses across the United States. Computers appeared at Stetson as early as the 1960s but were large “scientific computers,” such as the IBM 1620 acquired by the library in 1964, and primarily performed administrative functions. By the spring of 1980, however, Stetson boasted a University Computing Center in the basement of Flagler Hall, replete with an “academic” computer to be used by students for research purposes. That fall, coursework in Computer Science was offered for the first time. This Commodore PET 4008 was first released in 1980 and would have been one of Stetson’s earliest “microcomputers” — what we think of today as a PC.

Kelly Larson is archivist for the Stetson University duPont-Ball Library’s Archives & Special Collections.

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or many years, I have been studying the behaviors and skill sets of high-performing leaders in the public and private sectors. Prior to my current role at Stetson, I served for 29 years as a school principal at all levels of K-12 education and as a school district leader. During my tenure as an elementary, middle and high school principal, I worked with many impactful school leaders. I also saw many leaders who were not prepared for the challenges of the job. Working with outstanding colleagues here at Stetson, and having the opportunity to work with school districts across the country and the world, has allowed me to formulate a new way of thinking about how extraordinary leaders in the private sector function and what can be learned and transferred from those experiences into the world of K-12 leadership. While all sectors of our society utilize specific principles and common practices designed to identify, recruit, develop and retain the best leaders, there are significant differences between the principles and practices needed for educational leaders in the 20th century and today’s school leaders. Of particular interest has been the examination of how some leaders perform on a daily basis at the highest levels — with sustained results and a deep commitment to the organizations’ mission from their stakeholders — while other leaders fail to sustain leadership excellence. Or, they simply fail to ever meet the expected standards for their leadership positions. Central to this work has been an examination of how highperforming leaders utilize power. Do these leaders see their authority as deriving primarily from the power of the position itself, the leader as high-performing manager, or as a result of the power of their expertise as the instructional leader? Or, do they have a third way of looking at power: the leader as an influencer and team builder focused on powerful missions that matter? I have identified three distinct leadership tiers and 10 high-impact leadership behaviors that, when implemented with fidelity, support sustained leadership excellence. Over the past few decades, there has been a shift in the private sector toward recognizing that leadership is a collective enterprise, rather than the domain of just one individual. In the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) world in which all sectors of our society operate, organizations large and small are recognizing that it takes collective leadership to meet organizational goals. In VUCA environments, no individual leader, regardless of the position power that individual holds or how skilled and dedicated that individual may be, is capable of solving all of the organization’s problems or meeting all of the organization’s goals.


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With education hanging in the balance, a call is made for distributing leadership to empowered mission-driven teams. ESSAY BY CHRISTOPHER COLWELL, ED.D.

In total, author Christopher Colwell, Ed.D., has identified three distinct leadership tiers and 10 high-impact leadership behaviors that, when implemented with fidelity, support sustained leadership excellence. Colwell is a graduate of Stetson (’77, M.Ed. ’82).

Photo by Bobby Fishbough

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TIER-1 LEADERSHIP By contrast, leadership-training programs in the first half of the 20th century focused on effectiveness primarily through the lens of efficiency and the skilled management of resources and people by a centralized leader. Effective leadership was seen as the effective use of the power of the position in tightly controlled hierarchical environments. This is Tier 1 leadership — where the leader uses the power of the position to meet the organization’s goals as efficiently and consistently as possible. This first tier of leadership, the leader as high-performing manager, is certainly needed in today’s schools. It is true that no one can learn in environments that are chaotic or are emotionally and physically unsafe. Leaders need to use the power of the position to address issues regarding the ethical behavior of employees and to assure that all students and stakeholders are safe. Yet, a well-managed school is not synonymous with a highperforming academic environment where teaching and learning can excel. The idea that a school leader in 2018 can be effective simply by demonstrating and sustaining excellence as a manager of the school is unfounded.

TIER-2 LEADERSHIP In the decades closing the 20th century, and continuing today, K-12 leadership programs added a second tier into their leadershiptraining programs and graduate schools. This second tier focuses on the power and abilities of the leader as an instructional expert. All high-performing leaders must possess the technical expertise to understand and evaluate all aspects of the organizations they lead. The education sector is no different. The school leader must be a teacher of teachers. In this view, the school leader must be more than a high performer. The impactful leader also must have a full understanding of pedagogy and instructional frameworks, along with being a skilled manager of the daily operations of the school or school district. The addition of this second tier of expectations for school leaders makes sense. No one wants to be in a hospital where the CEO doesn’t understand how hospitals can and should operate. No one wants to be in an airport where the CEO does not understand how top-notch airports function. Similarly, no one wants to teach in a school, or send their children to a school, where the principal does not recognize good teaching and engaged students, or understand how to improve teaching and learning opportunities using recognized best practices.

It is these first and second tiers of leadership education that I experienced as a graduate student in the 1980s and as a working principal and district administrator in the 1990s and 2000s. This focus on the leader as an expert manager of all of the systems that make a school function, and as an expert in teaching and learning pedagogy, continues to dominate graduate-school curricula today. These same two areas of focus also dominate the curricula in use by professional-development programs across the country for current school leaders.

TIER-3 LEADERSHIP “Mission-driven leadership” recognizes the value and necessity of the school leader as an instructional expert and as an efficient and skilled manager, but these skills cannot, in and of themselves, guarantee successful teaching and learning in the complex high-stakes environments that make up today’s schools. The modern school leader also must be an expert in interpersonal skills and team building plus have the ability to influence others to achieve missions that matter, that make a significant difference in the lives of children. This focus on the expert use of interpersonal skills to distribute leadership authority and responsibility to high-performing teams on missions that matter forms the foundation for a third tier of leadership: the mission-driven leader. These tier-3 leaders are able to provide high levels of support to the organization by building teams, trust, a common mission, encouragement with expectations and a strong drive for results. The mission-driven leader is able to articulate, by word and deed, the primary goals and mission of the organization. The tier-3 leader recognizes that leadership is a team sport and that leadership authority and responsibility must be widely distributed throughout the organization. The leader recognizes that without trust and common goals there can be no team and that in environments as complex as schools, without teams of leaders, success is unlikely. In short, tier-3 leaders see their primary function as building the capacity of others within the organization to lead. This tier-3 leadership orientation is fundamentally different from a leadership approach based on position power, a hierarchical leadership structure where responsibility and authority are centralized. Tier 3 also goes beyond viewing the leader as highfunctioning based on technical, expert power. Tier-3 leaders

Tier-3 leaders recognize the ability to motivate and influence others as their single greatest leadership attribute. These leaders recognize that in order for teachers and students to be motivated and feel empowered, the purpose of the work itself must be meaningful. 30

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Mission-driven leadership is fundamentally about the strategies needed for today’s school leaders to build and sustain teams of educators focused on powerful missions — what Stetson describes as leading lives of significance.

recognize the ability to motivate and influence others as their single greatest leadership attribute. These leaders recognize that in order for teachers and students to be motivated and feel empowered, the purpose of the work itself must be meaningful. Mission-driven leaders recognize that teachers are not motivated by a well-organized master schedule or testing calendar. Teachers are not motivated by detailed lesson plans or standardized tests. Teachers are, however, motivated when they truly feel empowered to make decisions that impact the lives of children.

SO, WHAT NOW? How, then, do school leaders move from functioning primarily as managers and instructional leaders to leaders who also have the ability to distribute leadership authority to teams? Perhaps the biggest challenge faced by today’s school leaders involves developing strategies that allow leaders to shift their daily activities away from a focus on school management (tier 1) and even instructional leadership (tier 2) and toward leading empowered teams with goals that are viewed as highly significant by teachers and other stakeholders (tier 3). Today, too many school leaders find themselves trapped in tier-1 management activity. These leaders struggle to find the time to serve as instructional leaders or leaders of empowered teams.

For these school leaders, developing and maintaining the skills necessary to be a high-performing manager, an instructional expert and a mission-driven team builder can be an overwhelming task. To make the shift toward missions that matter and away from daily operations, responsibilities must be shared. And this focus on distributing leadership authority to others within the organization begins with trust. Mission-driven leaders trust down the organization. That is, these leaders do not begin by expecting others to trust them but begin by trusting others. The mission-driven leader is committed to building and empowering teams of leaders. Mission-driven leaders recognize that the smartest person in the room is the room. The way to succeed in VUCA environments is to empower more stakeholders, in other words to make the room bigger. Mission-driven leaders also seek to spend at least 50 percent of each day focused on these tier-3 culture, climate and team-building structures within their organization. Management leadership and instructional leadership remain as primary obligations but are no longer seen as the sole obligation, or even the dominant obligation, of the mission-driven leader. Mission-driven leadership is fundamentally about the strategies needed for today’s school leaders to build and sustain teams of educators focused on powerful missions — what Stetson describes as leading lives of significance. It is the team that provides the capacity for the organization to excel. It is the team that enables the organization to sustain that excellence. Mission-driven leaders recognize, and place the highest value, on distributing leadership to empowered teams. In the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world that is education today, I would argue that is the only way forward. Christopher Colwell, Ed.D., is an associate professor and chair of the Department of Education at Stetson University. Colwell’s latest book, “Mission-Driven Leadership,” published by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, examines leadership tiers and the daily behaviors that today’s school leaders need in order to excel. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


Campaign Significance Snapshots of the university’s charitable giving reveal lasting impact — plus the potential for much more.



s the Stetson community closes in on its $200 million all-inclusive Beyond Success — Significance campaign goal, we look at the difference that funding has brought — to our students, faculty, staff and alumni, as well as to our local and global communities. The past six years have been marked by growth (in students, facilities, programs) and by quality experiences (research, internships, curricular developments) that enrich a campus culture and equip students for significance after Stetson.


Kailtlin Smedley ’19

At the beginning of her tenure as a music major at Stetson three years ago, Kaitlin Smedley’s life was turned upside down in the blink of an eye. Her sister was in a near-fatal car crash that left the Smedley family financially strapped to the breaking point. “My sister’s severe brain damage had left her living in a nursing home, and my parents having to take care of her and take her to experimental treatments all over the place,” said Smedley ’19, who is from Jacksonville, Florida. “This situation has consumed my family. My parents told me I would have to drop out of Stetson. I thought I would have to give up on my dreams, but this scholarship saved me.” Countless stories such as Smedley’s underscore just how vital donor support to the Stetson Scholarship Fund is for students. Simply, they have dreams and ambitions that would otherwise go unfulfilled. 32

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STUDENT RESEARCH Stetson students across all majors are required to complete a Senior Project as a graduation requirement, and for most students that involves research. (See related articles throughout this issue.) To conduct research, students require assistance in covering the cost of equipment, supplies and possibly travel. Together with departments, The Dean’s Fund addresses a special need — helping students present their work at scholarly conferences. For example, last spring Sarah Coffey ’18, who majored in environmental science and geography, presented at the American Association of Geographers national conference in New Orleans, as well as at the Council on Undergraduate Research’s “Posters on the Hill” in Washington, D.C. “This experience was extremely important to my journey at Stetson,” explained Coffey, now earning her master’s degree in forest resources and environmental conservation at Virginia Tech. “Presenting my research at these two conferences not only provided me with important networking experience, but it also prepared me to continue my journey as a graduate student. I feel very fortunate to have been given these opportunities as an undergraduate.” Added Tom Farrell, Ph.D., Stetson’s interim dean of the College of Arts & Sciences: “Students benefit not just in terms of the knowledge generated in their research, but in the fuller mentoring that they experience with faculty, the professional skills required to make a formal presentation of their work, and potentially the contacts they can make in their conference experience.”

CAPITAL CONSTRUCTION At Stetson, you’ll find a building — affectionately called the CUB — that is much like a human heart. It’s the epicenter of activity in the middle of campus. And it’s getting revitalized. Originally built in 1957, the Carlton Union Building is receiving a renovation, thanks to a $30 million project that will increase usable space by 40 percent while also enhancing all that was popularized decades ago among students, faculty, staff, visitors and alumni alike. To assist, Stetson Trustee Rich George ’76 and his wife, Lilis, literally put their stamp on the reinvigoration with a recent contribution resulting in the new Rich and Lilis George Main Lobby. “We have supported Stetson for many years, as we live close by and witness the amazing impact it has on her students and the greater community,” Rich George commented. “Through the generosity of alumni, the university continues to add value by building first-class facilities, focusing on its top-notch faculty, and continuing to support a significant percentage of bright and diverse first-generation college students. We believe that Stetson prepares its graduates for a wellbalanced life of citizenship and success.” Several naming opportunities remain available for specific locales within the CUB — ranging from an associate director’s office (for $20,000) and the outdoor dining/plaza area (for $500,000) to the student life/activity center (for $2.5 million). Editor’s note: The entire list of naming opportunities can be found at stetson.edu/campus-center.

The Carlton Union Building’s renovation is a $30 million project.


The Cooper Beach Volleyball Courts have been a popular addition for Athletics since 2012.

Helping student-athletes achieve success in competition and in the classroom is no small feat. (See Page 52.) All gifts to Stetson Athletics enable the donor to become a member of the Hatter Athletic Fund and ensure the sustainability of the Hatters’ 17 Division I sports programs — like the baseball team, which made national news last spring by nearly advancing to the College World Series. As Brooks Wilson ’18, a standout on that team and now a pitcher in the Atlanta Braves organization, noted: “All donations are used wisely and make a huge impact on not only the program as a whole but each individual athlete as well.” Donors may designate where they would like their gifts to go, either to a specific sports program or the Athletics General Fund. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


The rising Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center

HILLEL At Stetson, global citizenship means global conversations and a global home. By growing a robust and sustainable Hillel on campus, Hatters of all backgrounds now have the opportunity to engage with the Jewish faith and culture, and Jewish students from around the world will know that they have a home at Stetson, according to Sam Friedman, who became the first Hillel director last spring. “When Hillels are at their best, they impact the greater campus community, not just the Jewish students,” Friedman said. “Stetson, by making an investment and commitment to Jewish student life, will offer another opportunity for Hatters to engage in their own personal growth, intellectual development and global citizenship.” Among the naming opportunities still available: Kosher Kitchen ($100,000), Living Room ($75,000), Courtyard Patio ($75,000) and second-floor bedrooms ($25,000 each). Also, donors may provide gifts in any amount to Jewish Student Scholarships or the Hillel Program Fund.

INSTITUTE FOR WATER AND ENVIRONMENTAL RESILIENCE Saving the environment is a lofty goal, one that Stetson’s Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience is committed to as a core value. The institute, which provides education, research, policy support and leadership development, is required by the university to be financially self-sustaining. In January, the Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center opens as its new headquarters. A prime current initiative is securing dollars to fully furnish the center, which will accommodate water-quality testing, along with community meetings, seminars and symposia, among other activities. The center will be used by faculty and students as well as visiting researchers and policymakers — “a hub of community engagement around natural-resource issues,” described Clay Henderson, J.D., executive director of the institute and a Stetson professor.

Sam Friedman, Stetson’s first Hillel director

INTERNSHIPS From the age of 12, microbiology senior Matt Lucas knew the struggles with cystic acne all too well. After two years of compassionate treatment at an area dermatology practice, Lucas knew someday he would help others with their skin ailments. Fast-forward a decade, and thanks to support from Stetson’s Internship Program, Lucas gained valuable experience in multiple aspects of dermatology at that same clinic. “I observed and learned how to build patient-physician relationships, observed skin examinations and surgeries, and educated myself on the business aspect of running a medical office,” Lucas said. “This internship increased my confidence of attending medical school in the fall of 2019 and allowed me to create concrete goals for the type of physician I want to become.” The Internship Fund supports financially challenged students as they gain an early competitive advantage in their career fields. Funding offsets expenses students incur from traveling to a distant city, commuting to work and paying for rent, all while offering them valuable real-world experience.


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GLOBAL TRAVEL With global citizenship a core university value, a major goal of the Beyond Success – Significance campaign is travel for study abroad. This occurs through W.O.R.L.D.: The David and Leighan Rinker Center for International Learning. (W.O.R.L.D. stands for World Outreach, Research, Learning and Development.) Research shows that when students go abroad, they deepen their points of view, gain important intercultural communication skills, and return to campus with greater confidence and independence. One such student is Zoe Weaver, a senior global development major/political science minor from Newark, Ohio, whose travel to South Korea and Taiwan “completely changed the direction of my career path.” “I met professors and professionals in my field who were able to give me a better view about career opportunities in Asia and how my skill set might actually be best suited for research in that region,” said Weaver, a student ambassador for the W.O.R.L.D. program. “I now have a clearer idea of the steps I need to take academically to graduate and begin my career. “It may seem that some people will never have to interact with the rest of the world because their major has little to do with international affairs. But the reality is that everyone is affected by globalization and will at some point need to know how to thrive within it.”

Deans’ List Wishful targets of continued and future charitable giving from the academic top:

COLLEGE OF ARTS & SCIENCES • Endowment of the Deanship • General Scholarships • Making the Elizabeth Hall Lobby Distinctive • The Initiative for Science and Health

SCHOOL OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION • Endowment for Entrepreneurship Chair • Endowment of the Dean’s Position • Expansion for Prince Entrepreneurship and Centurion Sales programs (“highimpact” programs) • J.J. Master Center for Business Professionalism • Study Abroad Scholarships

SCHOOL OF MUSIC • Bob Rich and Mollie Rich Legacy Award Scholarship in Voice • Carlton Union Building Renovation Piano Acquisition • Christmas Candlelight Concert in Orlando (Dec. 1, 2018) • Courtesy Valet Golf Car Acquisition • Lee Chapel Green Room and Backstage/Holding Area Updates • Music Ensemble Scores Library Facility

DUPONT-BALL LIBRARY International study could mean a trip to the Korean Institute of National Unification Conference in Seoul. Zoe Weaver is on the left in back.

Want to help or learn more about how your contribution can make a difference? Contact Kate Pearce at kpearce@stetson.edu or 386-822-7461. Or visit Stetson.edu/campaign.

• Acquisition of E-journal Back-files • Expansion of the Innovation Lab into a 24/7 Innovation Center • Furniture for Quiet Study Area • Mobile Whiteboards

COLLEGE OF LAW • Scholarships

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Taking Stock of Our Sciences Institutional support and an undergraduate culture shaped by an environment focused on research are creating new distinctiveness at Stetson.



lmost a decade ago, Stetson University embarked on an ambitious plan to boost science in the Central Florida region through increased student enrollment and a concomitant expansion of its tenure-track STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) faculty corps. The outcomes of this strategic approach have been quite significant. For starters, the university re-envisioned its geography and environmental science program as environmental science and studies, created a health sciences program, and added a public health minor. And that is only a sample.

INSTITUTIONAL SUPPORT OF SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH Stetson’s chronicled history of summer research grants dates back as early as 1969. During the past 10 years alone, Stetson has invested more than $1 million of institutional funds to seed innovative projects, some with potential to compete for external grants and private funds. Summer grant awards are typically about $5,000, with the opportunity for additional travel funds. For science faculty, summer grants support a focused project nested in a much larger question that we chase over the course of our career. And, the cost of scientific research is considerable! Scientists must raise substantial resources to cultivate sustainable research programs that respond to changing societal challenges and technological advances. Plus, as curators of the next generation of scientists, we have a duty to expose our students to the 36

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exquisite experience of scientific discovery using state-of-the-art resources. Funding for scientific research furnishes instrumentation, supplies, gear, sophisticated technology and access to other critical resources. In other words, success in scientific research depends heavily on resource acquisition — whether through grant writing, fundraising or networking. To that end, faculty grantsmanship is important at Stetson. In the sciences, competition for extramural funds, particularly federal grants, is blossoming and has borne fruit. Individual science faculty and faculty teams, for instance, have successfully won external grant awards for instrumentation and research. Our Office of Grants, Research and Strategic Initiatives shepherds grant-proposal development from idea to post-award. The office identifies funding opportunities and potential collaborators, edits and integrates multi-collaborator contributions, develops budgets to support projects, and manages proposal creation and submission processes.

The staff also work closely with faculty to develop one- to three-year proposal plans and coordinate meetings between science faculty and federal grant officers in Washington, D.C., through diverse activities such as the annual Council on Undergraduate Research Dialogues. This wraparound service at Stetson is impressive, given the scope of grant offices at schools our size, where proposal submission and post-award processing are the typical capacity. Stetson’s support of faculty research in the natural sciences is funded, in part, by an endowment designated to encourage scientific innovation. The Willa Dean Lowery Grant Program is named for long-serving patron and alumna Willa Dean Lowery, Ph.D. ’48. Her exceptional and vast career spans professional roles including bacteriologist, obstetrician and gynecologist, public health officer and theologian. Lowery’s vision and support of research have been critical in boosting Stetson’s impact in the natural sciences. Through her generous gifts, Stetson has bestowed 13 Lowery Grants for meritorious scientific research projects over the past seven years, several of which have garnered national and international attention. Stetson is fortunate to have generous donors whose support for diverse aspects of education directly impacts the sciences. The Kresge Science Initiative Grant, for one, supports much-needed acquisition, maintenance, upgrade and repair of science instruments. The Lynn and Mark Hollis Chair of Health and Wellness is an endowed distinction held by individual science faculty to advance science and health sciences. Our new Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience recently launched a grant program to support interdisciplinary research, outreach and service learning to address environmental challenges in Central Florida. In addition, the Nina B. Hollis Research Impact Award provides seed funding to support innovative research that improves the educational outcomes of marginalized youth in our communities. In 2010, Stetson received a pioneering gift from long-standing university Trustees Hyatt and Cici Brown to create the Brown Faculty Fellow endowed chair in the sciences.

Terence Farrell, Ph.D., Brown Fellow and professor of biology, has since implemented initiatives to advance science education across the university, including the design and renovation of classrooms and faculty-student science research spaces and support for research with undergraduates. (See Page 48.) A significant role of the endowed fellow is to coordinate a visiting biology faculty program. The success of the biology program contributed to a larger endowment by the Browns in 2013 to expand the biology residency model to what is now the flagship Brown Teacher-Scholar Fellows Program. We attract promising individuals who are new to higher education — either recent doctorateearners or accomplished professionals who are making a career shift to higher education. Fellows come from diverse disciplinary backgrounds — the arts, education, educational technology, humanities and science — to enhance the university’s capacity in specific areas. The program provides enduring benefits of original, rapidly changing knowledge from visiting scholars who hold a residency at Stetson for up to two years. The program’s alternating cycle of visiting fellows creates the flexibility necessary to respond to emerging issues in higher education and student interests. A new Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence facilitates the Brown Teacher-Scholar Fellows Program. Since 2010, Stetson has accepted more than one dozen fellows to the program, with 60 percent hailing from biology, health sciences and environmental sciences. More than 75 percent of our fellows have secured tenuretrack positions at universities, spreading Stetson excellence across higher education. Then, this past spring, Hyatt and Cici Brown donated the largest gift in Stetson’s history to broaden our science and health education footprint in Central Florida. Earmarked to construct a new and greatly needed science building and expand science programs, the $18 million investment is part of the Beyond Success – Significance fundraising campaign.(See Page 32.) As our state continues to experience dramatic population increase, the Browns anticipate this investment bearing handsome dividends in health care and science while

serving as a vital boost to students pursuing careers in these fields. To bolster this initiative and help identify new frontiers for growth, Stetson recently named Tim Elgren, Ph.D., professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Oberlin College, as special advisor on strategic initiatives. (See Page 15.)

INFLUENCE ON UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH CULTURE Stetson’s mission is to provide an excellent education in a creative community where learning and values meet. Our commitment to a transformative experience is reflected in our dedication to every undergraduate: Each student must complete a Senior Project under the guidance of a faculty member. Senior Project is the culminating experience of our students’ learning journey. And the imperative of Senior Project as a curricular requirement is rooted in compelling evidence that demonstrates substantial cumulative and transformative effects of research on students, mentors, Stetson, higher education and society. Senior Project allows our students to demonstrate integration of learning. Our students learn science by doing science. In the sciences, students engage critical literacies — reading and comprehension, writing, and speaking — as gateways to scientific thinking. They also dedicate significant time to assessing questions (or hypotheses). They design and implement quantitative and qualitative analyses as models to answer their queries. They demonstrate persuasive communication skills to disseminate their learning and as a means of engaging the full scientific process, which, in turn, leads to new and even more interesting questions. Since 1997, Stetson has annually highlighted student research at a full-day showcase of student academic achievement and distinction in experiential learning. Stetson’s Showcase Symposium offers the university community a glimpse into the academic excellence occurring across the DeLand campus. It is such an important event that we cancel classes to allow students and faculty to fully engage. (See Page 40.) To nurture a culture of undergraduate research throughout the summer months, students compete for highly selective scholarStetson.edu/today | STETSON



ship awards to participate in Stetson’s Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE). The centerpiece of our immersive SURE program is an eight-week researchintensive experience where SURE Scholars work on individual projects under the guidance of a faculty mentor and present findings at the subsequent Showcase. This signature program is generously supported by endowed funds. However, our science students have other options to gain important research skills in the summer. Some participate in federal grant-funded programs such as the Research Experiences for Undergraduates at research-intensive universities. Senior research provides one measure of our capacity as a university to effectively integrate and scaffold research competencies across our curriculum. Nationwide, the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) recognized this need and recently implemented a comprehensive $17 million transformations grant project in 24 science depart-

has resulted in notable outcomes, such as peer-reviewed student co-authored publications, presentations at national scientific meetings and graduates matriculating to top-tier post-baccalaureate programs. Even more noteworthy, however, is the significance our students extract from these experiences. According to a 2014 Gallup-Purdue study, the strongest predictors of future success are experiences where students engage initiative and agency, such as conducting research that takes a semester or more to complete.

RESEARCH AND EDUCATIONAL ENVIRONMENT The Stetson faculty role comprises three areas of responsibility: teaching, research/creative inquiry and professional citizenship. As part of a learning-centered institution versus a research-intensive one, our faculty place high value on the integration of facilitation of student learning and continuous intellectual and creative inquiry as scholars. This teacherscholar faculty model is a powerful testimony

Our strong commitment to mentored student research in the sciences has resulted in notable outcomes, such as peer-reviewed student co-authored publications, presentations at national scientific meetings and graduates matriculating to top-tier post-baccalaureate programs. Even more noteworthy, however, is the significance our students extract from these experiences.

ments across the country. The project focuses on the integration of research competencies across each discipline and aims to provide best-practice strategies for higher education. To enrich the learning experience for our students, Stetson’s science faculty provide expertise to this project and to leadership in science at CUR and other professional science organizations. While these engagements reveal the significant assets we possess in our senior research program, they also reveal our potential for growth. At the same time, our strong commitment to mentored student research in the sciences 38

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of academic excellence demonstrated as student transformation and research innovation. To capture the essence of how our teacher-scholar faculty role defines our research and educational environment, members of Stetson’s Professional Development Committee penned “The Stetson Teacher-Scholar Statement” in 2016. Stetson’s faculty engage the teacherscholar role during a nine-month academic year that spans mid-August to mid-May. Science faculty generally use the summer months to boost research productivity and leverage collaborations at Stetson and

beyond. They also teach summer courses — face-to-face, online and abroad — develop programs, study, carry out administrative university functions, plan, pursue passions and other interests, vacation, and prepare for the new academic year. In essence, our science faculty are rarely off the clock. Faculty teaching a full course load during the academic year generally facilitate three courses per semester. Each course requires preparatory time, class time, grading/ assessment and office hours. Historically, the experiential component of science teaching occurs in laboratory courses, but a number of science teachers integrate experiential learning into what is identified as “lecture” courses — course activities, projects and other assignments that integrate real-life, complex problems into the traditional classroom. Laboratory courses count as half of one course, although labs require significant prep, implementation and assessment time. Dedicated laboratory spaces accommodate “bench” science and research in Sage Hall and other sites on campus. But lack of adequate space continues to plague our growing student population, research needs, and accommodation for instrumentation. Therefore, a new science center will be a very welcome addition. At the same time, our current facilities support high-impact teaching, including a SCALE-UP classroom, where collaborative learning is facilitated in the natural sciences and other learning engagements. We also possess a number of computer labs, and a novel Innovation Lab in the duPont-Ball Library offers state-of-theart technological resources, such as an array of 3-D printers, virtual reality devices, digital sewing machines and Arduino kits for programming computer-controlled devices. Our required senior capstone is built into faculty teaching loads, at least to the degree that one can describe the nature and complexity of scientific research in terms of the credit-hour. This is because scientific research is, by design, a time-intensive endeavor. It requires multiple experimental trials under carefully controlled conditions to discern reproducibility, validity and reliability. And that is just the tip of the iceberg! Further, a confounding outcome of

planned enrollment growth is increased class size in senior-research courses. This phenomenon has bucked traditional modes of mentoring, which demand significant one-to-one faculty-student engagement. As class sizes grow across the country and budgets shrink, this challenge has moved higher education to reconsider how research mentoring is facilitated. Curriculum redesign is one strategy emerging from the national conversation on undergraduate research. Experts suggest that for students to demonstrate desired outcomes, performance and behaviors, faculty must purposefully align learning objectives early and across the arc of the student experience. This “intentional design” rationale is not new. But, although much more is known about how students learn, curriculum tends to remain the result of history and compromise. The intentional design approach reasons that lower-level lecture and laboratory courses have scope and breadth to initiate necessary research-skill development and reduce the burden of competency building in designated upper-level research courses, such as Senior Project. Although not a holistic solution to the challenge of increased enrollment, our science departments are consistently revising curricula to address these and other issues arising from the changing landscape of higher education. This kind of evidence-based teaching and learning is encouraged and supported by the Brown Center for Faculty Innovation and Excellence, the Hollis Family Student Success Center and the Writing Center. Our centers offer vibrant faculty professionaldevelopment programs, student-support services and communication-skills development support, respectively. In the 2007 article “Why Teacher-Scholars Matter: Insights from FSSE and NSSE,” George Kuh reported “a positive relationship between the amount of time faculty spend on research, particularly research with students, and the emphasis on deep approaches to learning in their courses.” Kuh, who serves as chancellor’s professor for postsecondary research at Indiana University, suggests that increasing the value placed and time spent on research with undergraduates, and increasing faculty emphasis on deep approaches to

From an impact perspective, Stetson is making a significant contribution to the next generation of scientists, engineers, health care professionals and citizens equipped to address complex 21st-century challenges.

learning, result in increases in the amount students feel they gained from the college experience. Our teacher-scholar science faculty have long recognized this relationship. Since 1883, we have demonstrated our commitment to high-quality experiential education in a liberal-learning environment where scholarly endeavor and lifelong learning form a strong foundation for excellent science teaching, and a place where innovative and entrepreneurial research thrives.

IMPACT ON SCIENCE EDUCATION AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT Stetson has experienced rapid growth in the number of students electing to major in the natural sciences. Together, science majors comprise 20 percent of our undergraduate student population. The health sciences and biology departments graduate the largest number of students and consistently rank in the top three of total graduates from the College of Arts and Sciences. From an impact perspective, Stetson is making a significant contribution to the next generation of scientists, engineers, health care professionals and citizens equipped to address complex 21st-century challenges. Such awe and wonder of science is sparked at an early age. That wonder is the good stuff that propels our students to persist through challenging chemistry, physics, mathematics and biology courses. It is for this reason that Stetson’s science faculty, staff and students stoke and fuel our youth’s curiosity by paying it forward. Take our Gillespie Museum, for example. Open and free to the public since 1958, this remarkable museum has been a center for earth and environmental science education,

housing a historic mineral collection with nearly 1,000 of its 15,000 specimens on display in changing exhibits. Visitors get to take a tiny peek into the vast diversity of Florida’s ecosystems and much more. The grounds of the museum and the adjacent Rinker Environmental Learning Center provide outdoor classrooms, including a well-established Native Florida Plant Landscape, the Hatter Harvest Garden, Stetson Beekeeping and the Volusia Sandhill Ecosystem, an urban restoration in progress. Stetson’s faculty, staff and undergraduate students contribute to a vibrant museum outreach program, ranging from school tours and field trips to a monthly Science Café, where scientists and nonscientists of all ages enjoy learning from one another in a relaxed atmosphere. In addition, Stetson’s High Achieving Talented Students (HATS) Program offers year-round academic enrichment through Saturday and summer classes to encourage high-achieving K-12 students, who explore academic areas of interest in our university setting. Furthermore, about four years ago, our Department of Education and elementary school educators in west Volusia County collaborated with science faculty at Stetson and other regional colleges to implement a $1 million grant-supported project to improve teacher preparation in science and other disciplines. But, this is only a snapshot, a sample. There is so much more. As we consider the future of our science enterprise, we have much to celebrate and much opportunity for growth. Rosalie Richards, Ph.D., is associate provost for Faculty Development and a professor of chemistry and education at Stetson University. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Finding new devotion through student research, alumni now are helping to change the world, one frog or song or micro enterprise at a time.



or Danielle (Leopold) Regan ’10, life is a zoo — literally. Regan was majoring in biology at Stetson and planning to become a high school agriculture teacher. Then her SURE (Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience) grant changed everything. Goodbye, agriculture. Hello, banded water snakes, Panamanian golden frogs, Egyptian tortoises and Chinese alligators.

“I found my passion for these scaly creatures when I did my student research project at Stetson,” said Regan. As a student of Terence Farrell, Ph.D., professor of biology, Regan had become intrigued by some of his field-based research projects, especially a native-snake-versus-invasive-catfish study. (See Page 48.) Her SURE project required her to care for a lab with roughly 30 banded water snakes — her “first experience with captive animal husbandry,” she joked, adding, “My professors immersed me into the world of reptiles, and I was hooked.” Today, Regan is area manager of the Maryland Wilderness and Panamanian Golden Frog Team at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, where she frequently handles those exotic animals. She has worked the past seven years as a zookeeper. Regan’s transformation went on display during her senior year when she presented at Stetson Showcase — a daylong event each spring where students share their research through oral presentations, portfolios, posters, readings, music and theater performances, art exhibits, and multimedia work. Regan’s showcase detailed her research on whether banded water snakes, a species native to Florida, could “consume a far more challenging prey,” an invasive species of “armored” catfish known as the brown hoplo. Stetson Showcase celebrated its 20th anniversary in spring 2018, with student programs ranging in topics from media portrayals of


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African-American women in the workplace and Godzilla as a metaphor for nuclear war to social media’s impact on cryptocurrency. In all, there were more than 200 presentations encompassing medicine, literature, business, international relations, science, music, art, religion, philosophy, politics, race, gender, sexuality and other fields. Participation in SURE, a competitive grant program in which selected students undergo an eight-week, research-intensive experience during the summer under the mentorship of a Stetson faculty member, is required to present at Stetson Showcase. Often, as was the case with Regan, Stetson Showcase is a launching point for careers. Other times, Showcase simply represents the culmination of an undergraduate’s study. Either way, the program speaks to “an embarrassment of riches in undergraduate research” at the university, according to Kimberly Reiter, Ph.D., associate professor of ancient and medieval history and chair of the Stetson Undergraduate Research Committee. Reiter also serves as a national councilor for the Undergraduate Research Directors Committee for the Council of Undergraduate Research. While many universities have showcases for students in STEM (science/technology/engineering/math) and honors programs, Stetson Showcase is “more comprehensive,” Reiter said, adding that it’s the “oldest comprehensive showcase day in the country.” “We have a wealth of research from which to draw. I go to [national council] meetings, and I have to try very hard not to keep interjecting, because a lot of talk is about ‘How do we get undergrads to do research?’ … When it comes to Showcase, we don’t have to scramble for people. We’ve got them,” Reiter asserted. Students design their showcases for other students and faculty plus the general public, and their work is judged not only on content, but also how that content is communicated.

VIENNA BY STORM Soprano Jenna Siladie ’11 made her first trip abroad to Austria with a SURE Grant to study lied (German art song — that is, poetry set to classical music) at the Franz Schubert Institut. “I knew immediately that I belonged there and had to someday make it back, as Vienna is the epicenter of all things opera and

Danielle Regan ’10: “My professors immersed me into the world of reptiles, and I was hooked.”

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON




Jenna Siladie ’11 music,” Siladie said. “At the Franz Schubert Institut, I was working with a high caliber of other artists, singers and musicians, and therefore I was able to absorb such a deeper level of musicality and understanding of this musical art form and its poetry.” Siladie’s Stetson Showcase project challenged her to find ways to explain this “seemingly foreign musical genre in very down-to-earth ways,” she said. “I enjoyed showing how interconnected the music and poetry are, and giving passages that showed how Schubert wrote what a tree rustling in the winds sounded like, or how Brahms ‘composed’ a stormy night.” After earning her degree in vocal performance from Stetson, Siladie completed her Master of Music from Yale University and was a member of the Santa Fe Opera Company for two seasons. She recently made her European debut, singing Wagner’s “Götterdämmerung.” “Never in a million years did I think I’d be singing in this opera as my debut into German stages,” Siladie said. “It was so fulfilling just to see how much the audiences truly love this music.” Siladie lives in Vienna, where she sings as an ensemble member with the opera house Theater an der Wien. It’s far from her Stetson home, but lessons learned remain near. “Even now, I sing many times for people who have never been to the opera or to a vocal recital before, and it’s always a pleasure for me to show the humanness and accessibility that comes with these stories and songs,” she said.


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Michael Paul Cartledge II ’13 majored in communication and media studies at Stetson, and today he is using those skills as a doctoral student in practical theology at Princeton Theological Seminary. “Practical theology focuses on the life of the Christian community — specifically its practices and mission in its particular social context,” explained Cartledge, who plans to teach after earning his doctorate. “In my own work, I use sociological research methods to better understand the experiences of people suffering from depression and explore how Christian communities might … care for those who are suffering.” Through a SURE Grant, Cartledge examined “the artistic and expressive activities of a hip, young evangelical congregation in an urban context.” Ultimately, he showed how this faith community “used art to make the abstract concept of community a more tangible reality.” Presenting his research at Stetson Showcase, Cartledge began to do the work of a practical theologian without realizing it at the time. “I was really asking what was happening within the life of this faith community and why it was happening,” he said, “and that’s the first task of the practical

Michael Paul Cartledge II ’13 theologian: describing and interpreting what’s going on in a particular ministry context — the very work I would pick up a few years after my Showcase experience.”

VIRUS HUNTER Ask Kelly Coller ’02 how she spent her summer vacation in 2001, and she’ll tell you how she used her SURE Grant to hole up in Sage Hall with “mutant bacteria” and “luciferase” (light-emitting) read-outs. “I gained a lot of molecular biology experience, learned how to read scientific papers, and learned how to talk science by presenting to peers and faculty,” Coller said. After further study — a doctorate from the

DID YOU KNOW? Over the summer, Stetson senior Samantha Harris participated in the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates Program — literally taking the driver’s seat in the University of Arizona’s Cognitive and Autonomous Test (CAT) vehicle. The initiative offers students from diverse backgrounds valuable research opportunities at universities nationwide. Harris, a physics major, spent 10 weeks in charge of coding, with her part of the project focused on ensuring the instructions sent to the autonomous vehicle arrived quickly and accurately. Among additional aspects of the experience, there were graduate-research training sessions, along with work to enhance presentation skills and an opportunity to share the research. “It was an amazing experience,” Harris said. “Even though I am majoring in physics and not computer science, I learned a lot about coding in JavaScript and the network of the autonomous car. It was rewarding to be part of a team with different background knowledge, each contributing to this complex project.” In the future, Harris hopes to learn about the mechanical side of autonomous vehicles, such as image sensing and laser rangefinders, and hopes to study optical engineering in graduate school with continued AV research.


Sarah Edwards ’09: “My experiences at Stetson shaped my perspective on the world and gave me the confidence to follow my newfound passions.”


Kelly Coller ’02 Driskill Graduate Program in Life Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, along with a post-doctorate program at the University of Chicago — Coller learned to hunt viruses. “I was involved in the discovery of a novel human virus [Human Pegivirus 2] as part of an ongoing collaboration with scientists at the UCSF (University of California, San Francisco) Viral Diagnostics and Discovery Center,” Coller said. “My role was to develop tests to identify additional cases throughout the world.” Her work led her to receive a patent “describing techniques to detect the novel human virus,” she added. These days, Coller continues her medical detective work as a research scientist studying infectious disease at Abbott Laboratories in Illinois.

When Sarah Edwards ’09 arrived at Stetson, she had never traveled outside the Southeast, and her plan was to study political science and attend law school. Early experiences at Stetson motivated her to change her major to international business, and a SURE Grant enabled her to study in Mexico. There, Edwards examined how students from U.S. universities responded to marketing efforts tied to social responsibility, compared to students at universities in Mexico. Following graduation, Edwards served for three years with the Peace Corps in Ecuador, then worked for nonprofits in Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. Her Peace Corps projects included starting a youth-run television and radio show and a regional newspaper, and working with women’s groups to establish community banks and market their micro enterprises. Edwards moved back to the United States, where she currently works for the University of Missouri-Columbia as coordinator of Service and Alternative Breaks. Who knew? Edwards learned, offering this common refrain: “My experiences at Stetson shaped my perspective on the world and gave me the confidence to follow my newfound passions.”

Thanks to a SURE Grant, Sarah Hollmann ’18 spent a fully funded semester in Northern Ireland, where she conducted 24 interviews with ex-combatants, political figures and religious leaders. Her research produced a senior research project called “Tribal Trenches: A Qualitative Critique of Consociational Design in Northern Ireland.” In her investigation, Hollmann asked, how does consociational power-sharing impact ethnic divisions in Northern Ireland? She wrote: “Though those in the consociationalist school would claim that the lack of active political violence in Northern Ireland is a powerful argument in favor of consociationalism, I argue that active violence has been replaced by increasing political polarization and ethno-national tensions.” Using data gathered from the interviews, the project “critiqued the hypothesis that ethnic divisions lose their salience after the implementation of consociational power-sharing agreements after ethno-nationalist conflict.” As a result, Hollmann earned an invitation to participate in a May European Union Conference in California. Also, in June she traveled to Belgium and visited the European Parliament (an important forum for political debate and decision-making at the European Union level). In May, Hollmann received a bachelor’s degree in political science, with minors in Africana studies, gender studies and anthropology. She’s now at the University of Florida, on full scholarship and with a fellowship award, in quest of a doctorate in political science.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



CELLS OF GROWTH ‘Really rare’ opportunities for laboratory study put undergraduates face-to-face with potential links to cures for cancer.



achel Regester-Goumas will graduate in December with plans to attend medical school next year, but not before completing one final requirement of her time at Stetson: laboratory study.

The same is true for December graduate Makenzie Fourman, who has her eye on an eventual doctorate in molecular biology. For senior Rachel Wexler, summer work at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa served as a prelude for this — a chance to take a literal deep dive into research, at the very cellular level. Welcome to Sage Hall and the world of curing cancer, first floor, tucked down a long hallway in a room that is cramped but filled with wide eyes. Students, undergraduates, are researching cures for, yes, cancer. Or, as Wexler notes, “putting the puzzle together.” Making sure that happens is Roslyn Crowder, Ph.D., assistant professor and molecular biology program director. Crowder arrived at Stetson in fall 2013 after completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania and Penn State Cancer Institute. Her postdoctoral research examined the molecular differences between human malignant cells and noncancerous normal cells to attempt to exploit these changes to cause selective cell death in cancer cells while leaving normal cells unharmed. That work continues today with her students. Those students, eight of them in all, explore both under the lens and into the future. Who knows? They could discover something that becomes really big in the quest for curing cancer. Or, more likely, they could uncover their own future.

Roslyn Crowder, Ph.D., hopes the research “really goes into sparking what students do next.” Photos by Brittany Strozzo 44

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“My goals for this course and my research are to learn research techniques, see what interesting results I get out of this research and hopefully get results that lead to a publication,” says Wexler, a biology major. “I also would like to see if I want to continue to pursue this line of research.” During the summer, Fourman worked in a molecular cardiovascular lab at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, studying molecular development or, in her words, the “transcriptional expression in zebra fish.” Now, she’s studying cancer. The direction of her doctoral track just might be hanging in the balance. “I enjoy both,” Fourman says. Regester-Goumas, another molecular biology major, notes, “I feel like having the experience in research that relates to medicine is beneficial to a surgeon and a doctor, because even if I wasn’t the person conducting research, if I were to explain clinical trials to my patient by being involved in research I would have a greater idea of what that meant.” For the students, like the research itself, seemingly all is possible. Specifically, the one-semester lab research is part of a three-course program, which typically begins in the spring semester of the students’ junior year. This fall, the eight students have been paired to compose four teams, with the goal of identifying anti-cancer properties in the extracts of two different plant types, yaupon holly and Alpinia zerumbet (a plant in the ginger family). Two pairs of students are focusing on yaupon holly, the other two pairs on Alpinia zerumbet. The study of yaupon holly goes back to fall 2017, when the extracts of both newer and older leaves were used on leukemia cells. Each was found to kill leukemia cells, but to varying degrees. Now, those toxicities are being further defined by different students.

Two students are studying older-leaf extracts, with one student looking at leukemia cells and one student looking at normal cells. Likewise, two students are studying the extracts of newer (green) leaves, looking at leukemia cells and at normal cells. “We are trying to answer the question: Is the leaf extract, new or old, toxic to human cancer cells? We are hoping to try to find potential therapeutics that are specifically selective for cancer cells but leave normal cells unharmed,” Crowder explains. Among other questions being asked: Do the cells stop growing when the extract is added? And are the cells dying and, if so, in what manner are they dying — regulated cell death or unregulated cell death? (Very basically, in regulated cell death once the cell dies and breaks up, the cell gets cleared by cells of the immune system. After the process is over, there are no remnants of the cell. In unregulated cell death, the cell bursts open and leaks its intracellular components, inducing an undesirable immune response.) The study of Alpinia zerumbet goes back to fall 2016, when a student found the extract of the plant’s leaves was toxic to cancer cells. Then in fall 2017, another student looked at other parts of the plant and found extracts isolated from the plant seed and seed covering were capable of killing the cancer cells. This fall, again in very basic terms, the other group of four students is further studying the plant’s seed and seed covering, looking at both normal cells and cancer cells. During the experiments, which normally range in length from 12 to 24 hours but could extend to 72 hours, the students also must maintain the cells, replenishing them with nutrients. Students acquire their data using a flow cytometer and a bioluminescent plate reader. They are given suggested monthly timelines on where they should be in their research, typically focusing on a different type of technique each month. At the end of each experiment, the students then need several hours to process the samples — to assess growth, changes in cell metabolism or cell death. All the while, Crowder is keeping close watch. “My style is the first time [in the lab], they just sit and watch me and take notes. The

The cancer experiments typically range from 12 to 24 hours but could extend to 72 hours. second time they do it, and I am watching them, standing beside them so I can point out any technical errors or mistakes. The third time they do it themselves and I’m in my office; I’m not there. But I’m available by telephone for additional questions. For the next time, they’re up and running by themselves,” Crowder says. Finally, the students are required to write about and present their findings to faculty (separate from the university’s annual Stetson Showcase). The research is very real, Crowder asserts, also pointing to hopeful future research about plant-growth conditions and their effects on the anti-cancer properties. “It’s an authentic research experience that students are getting at an undergraduate level. And that’s really rare,” Crowder comments. “This really goes into sparking what students do next.” Regester-Goumas agrees. “This largely connects with what I want to do with my future career,” she says. Plus, just maybe, there is a bonus. “The things that we can find here, the results, could lead to future medications and treatments. That would be amazing,” Regester-Goumas adds. “But that’s not necessarily expected, because in research a

lot of times the experiment you want to happen doesn’t always happen. “So, we go into this research hoping that we find something that leads to further research that can then be taken to the actual field and utilized. To actually see that come to fruition and be built upon in the future would be amazing.”

DID YOU KNOW? At press time for this magazine, a crowdfunding campaign was in progress, established to raise dollars for Stetson’s plant anti-cancer research under the direction of Roslyn Crowder, Ph.D., molecular biology program director. Under the plan, outlined on Experiment.com, budget items will be used to grow and maintain leukemia cells and normal fibroblasts. Additionally, bioluminescent and flow cytometry kits will be purchased for students to examine induction of oxidative stress in leukemia cells treated with new and old leaf extracts of yaupon holly.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Coastline Query Professor Jason Evans has raised the question of sea-level rise from shore to shore. And he’s finding answers. BY A N DY B U TC H E R


Photo by Bobby Fishbough

he mockingbird may be the official state bird of Florida, but as environmentalist/ ecologist/scientist/professor Jason Evans, Ph.D., considers its coastline, he has a different variety in mind.

When it comes to sea-level rise caused by climate change, “we’re going to be like the canary in the coal mine,” says Evans, associate professor of environmental science and studies at Stetson. During the past century, the waters surrounding Florida have risen approximately 9 inches, and apparently the rate is accelerating. Don’t think that’s much? Just check out shorelines across the Sunshine State. And, although Florida has only one-fifth of Alaska’s massive 6,600-mile coastline, most of it is harrowingly low-lying, putting the state “front and center” in what has emerged as an issue of increasing international concern. As a result, Evans finds himself gaining attention and respect for wide-ranging research that is helping prod some serious thinking about the consequences of creeping seas. To say sea-level rise has a ripple effect is too tame. It’s more like a chain of dominoes waiting to fall, and it’s only a matter of time.


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In turn, Evans is raising questions. What happens when existing drainage systems cannot cope with higher water levels? What happens when flooded properties are abandoned? What happens when people move away — not only to the places they leave behind, but where they move to, potentially overburdening water supplies and other services there? “If we see the kind of impacts we think we’re going to in terms of sea-level rise over the next 30 to 50 years, then it’s really going to change the overall economic and growth plans of Florida,” Evans says, with a nod to the state’s reliance on tourism dollars tied in great part to its coastline. “It’s a big deal.” His research — some funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Florida Sea Grant — combines sophisticated data-crunching with old-fashioned, on-site footwork that also serves to provide valuable experience for his students at Stetson. “You learn techniques within the classroom that we actually apply in real-world communities,” Evans says. “It’s not just theoretical. This is actual, on-the-ground work that needs to be done. And it’s very, very helpful for communities.” At the same time, the work is far from glamorous. Evans concedes that the work is “kind of nasty,” recalling a time he was out in tangled mangroves in Key West, hunting for old drainage pipes. “I came out [of

Evans’ research combines sophisticated data-crunching with old-fashioned, on-site footwork that also serves to provide valuable experience for his students.

“If we see the kind of impacts we think we’re going to in terms of sea-level rise over the next 30 to 50 years, then it’s really going to change the overall economic and growth plans of Florida. It’s a big deal.” — Jason Evans, Ph.D.

the mangroves] and someone who saw me said, ‘Are you here for the crocodiles?’” Evans’ response was a quizzical no. Evans’ profile in the climate-change world was heightened significantly by a 2016 article in Nature Climate Change he co-authored with Mathew Hauer and Deepak Mishra, both from the University of Georgia, where Evans previously spent time. Running detailed projections, the trio warned of major issues ahead if sea-level rise continues through the end of the century. A rise of just under a meter by the year 2100 would leave 4.2 million people in coastal communities nationwide at risk from flooding. A rise twice that amount — not an unrealistic possibility — and the total would leap to more than 13 million people. That’s equivalent to the entire populations of Pennsylvania or Illinois, and half of Florida’s. The authors cautioned that failing to take any action could lead to a forced

migration of a populace not witnessed since the “Southern Diaspora” of the early 20th century — but with the far greater economic, environmental and ecological implications of the 21st century. The Nature Climate Change article generated widespread media coverage. And while academic reaction was diverse, from some calling the predictions alarmist to others saying they were too conservative, the report has been cited more than 100 times. Evans calls such a reaction as “changing the conversation.” Perhaps most notably, the model took into account future population growth. “Before we published this paper, the standard approach for sea-level rise assessments was to just look at current populations and infrastructure when thinking about future impacts,” Evans explains. “But we know that static approach is inherently wrong, and will inherently lead to underestimates of future impact in any area, like coastal Florida, that is currently experiencing population growth.” Evans’ enhanced notoriety has led to active engagement. The City of Tybee Island, a small barrier-island community just outside of Savannah, Georgia, sits a mere 10 feet above sea level. Evans’ work there has helped city leaders develop what City Manager Shawn Gillen labels a “defend and adapt” strategy, which includes strengthening the city’s dune system and upgrading its drainage system. Nonetheless, Gillen remains unsure. “If sea-level rise is as bad as some people say it is down the road, there is going to be a point where there is not much more we can do,” he acknowledges, underscoring the importance of the uncomfortable questions Evans’ research has prompted. In Satellite Beach on Florida’s Space Coast, information that Evans and his team at Stetson gathered led to a recent decision to relocate public works and fire department posts to higher ground to avoid being incapacitated by flooding. That work has given Satellite Beach leaders “a much greater understanding of the risks to our built infrastructure and facilities due to climate

change,” according to City Manager Courtney Barker. “This has impacted our stormwater master-planning process and fee structure, impacted our decision-making for facility improvements, and significantly impacted our decisions for our financial reserves for future storms and flood impacts,” Barker says. While knee-deep in his work, literally at times, Evans also keeps an eye on global trends. He visited China earlier this year to learn about sea-level-rise research there and presented at a conference in Holland on property law and the environment. Implications, he stresses, are everywhere. One example: When water moves onto a property, “it actually ends up creating all sorts of legal quagmires that our law was not set up to deal with, necessarily,” Evans notes. And for Florida, that has special meaning. “The state actually owns anything that is submerged. So, if the sea submerges your property, then in theory it actually becomes state property,” Evans adds. Further, aside from his many research projects, co-editing the Journal of Environmental Management and teaching, of course, Evans recently added another responsibility, becoming faculty director of Stetson’s Institute for Water and Environmental Resilience. The institute’s four focus areas — Florida springs, the Indian River Lagoon, coastal resilience and sustainability management — neatly align with Evans’ professional interests. Also, the opening of the institute’s new home base, the Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center, is scheduled for February 2019. It’s another reason for Evans to look toward the future. “We’re going to be able to do some aquatic science long-term right on-site that’s going to be innovative,” Evans says. “I think it’s something that’s going to be seen as a model for small universities throughout the country even, and so I’m super excited about that.” To Evans, the future simultaneously brings thrill and trepidation. And for an environmentalist/ecologist/scientist/ professor, that’s a very good thing. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



No Squandered Sabbatical Professor Terence Farrell’s time away from the classroom was all about the behavior of snakes and the benefits of collaboration. Winners were everywhere. B Y J A C K R O T H


or Terence Farrell, Ph.D., a recent sabbatical provided an opportunity to finish some research projects and begin other new ones. The common theme: snakes. More specifically: rattlesnake predation on giant centipedes, the evolution of rattlesnake venom and the hormonal control of snake reproductive behaviors.

Another theme for the professor of biology and Brown Faculty Fellow: collaboration with Stetson students and faculty. “I keep an active research program, so I needed to get a lot of stuff done,” Farrell said of his sabbatical, which began in August 2017. “I mostly stayed on campus because a lot of the research was lab-based, but I also spent time at Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge [DeLeon Springs, Florida] in the field. “I worked with students to observe snake behaviors, so I needed to learn how to analyze and edit videos. I also started a YouTube channel and put videos on Facebook to gain a broader audience for the research.” The National Geographic Society, for example, picked up some of the YouTube uploads. Sabbaticals are offered to Stetson faculty once every seven years. The request for a sabbatical is reviewed by a committee, and professors have the option of either taking one semester or a full year working on their research projects. Farrell took the full year, and he also used the time to learn new skills that will help him in his research moving forward. “Stetson stands out when it comes to encouraging faculty members and their research projects,” Farrell commented. “Research, including the amount and quality of research that occurs during sabbaticals, keeps faculty current in their fields and students engaged in the type of research that will serve them well moving forward in their careers.” Since 1994, Farrell has published 23 journal peer-reviewed journal articles, five book chapters, two book reviews and five articles in the popular press. Many of Farrell’s papers have had multiple co-authors, and in 13 of them the lead author was an undergraduate or graduate student with little or no experience in scientific publishing. Farrell seeks to always work closely with his students to guide them through every step of the complex task of getting a manuscript written, revised and published. “Collaboration with students is what Stetson is all about,” he said. “Work both in the lab and in the field is critical to their development, 48

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A year of sabbatical research put Terence Farrell, Ph.D., on the front lines in search of all things serpentine. and especially for seniors working on their research projects; it gives them something really cool to work on.” Among the students this summer was Sam McPherson ’19, who majors in aquatic and marine biology. “The research was multifaceted, so we were working on several questions at once, all using pygmy rattlesnakes as a model system for ecophysiology and behavioral ecology,” McPherson said. “Part of the work included my senior research project, in which I am determining the metabolic cost of pregnancy in pygmy rattlesnakes. This involved extensive time out in the field, and our main study site was Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge. Field work included setting up enclosures for housing snakes — we call our site Pygmyopolis — spotting and capturing 27 pregnant female snakes as well as several nonreproductive females, comparing their metabolic rates in the lab using flowthrough respirometry, and monitoring the field enclosures every day until the snakes gave birth. So, we could measure the mass of the neonates and the postpartum mass of the moms.”

Farrell has mentored approximately 100 students during their senior research projects. Fifteen of them were co-authors on published papers, and dozens of others have made poster or oral presentations at scientific meetings. Notably, in other papers, co-authors are experts with special skills or equipment who exchange their services for authorship. Farrell is often the last listed co-author on papers, keeping with a tradition in the natural sciences of having the leader of a research lab appear at the end in the list of authors. This deep engagement in research provided the students with a thorough understanding of the scientific process. In addition, dozens of other students not doing their senior research on snakes have made multiple trips to Lake Woodruff and other local natural areas to assist in the effort. More notable numbers: Eight of the students who completed their senior research project with Farrell continued to be deeply engaged in research after leaving Stetson and obtained doctorate degrees. Not that all has been easy or without incident. “On a trip to collect rattlesnakes, we came across a large coral snake,” Farrell recounted. “Craig Lind [Lind, Ph.D., was formerly a Brown Visiting Teacher Scholar Fellow in ecology and now is an assistant professor at Stockton University in New Jersey] used snake tongs to move this beautiful animal to an open area to take some pictures. The next several rattlesnakes we collected each reacted to being grasped by the tongs in a manner we had never seen before. Clearly, the odor of coral snake lingering on the tongs was triggering strong defensive reactions by the rattlesnakes. The wonders of natural Florida keep producing moments of serendipitous insight that help guide our future research.” “Terry has built an impressive research program that receives national attention, while at the same time inspiring loads of undergrads,” noted Kirsten Work, Ph.D., chair of Stetson’s Department of Biology. In addition, Farrell has worked closely with current and former members of the

Students are frequently partners with their biology professor. “Collaboration with students is what Stetson is all about,” said Farrell. biology department. He has published with Professor Peter May, Ph.D., on snake and turtle ecology; with Professor Melissa Gibbs (director of aquatic and marine biology) on fish reproductive ecology; and with Professor Cynthia Bennington, Ph.D., on faculty and student perceptions of nonmajors science courses. Also, in the recent past, Farrell spent considerable time working with Lind. Farrell and Lind worked together on snake fungal disease, which continues to ravage snake populations in various parts of the country and affects snakes generally, while also remaining focused on his students, according to Work. “At the same time that he is doing this important work, he takes teams of undergrads in the field, often on Saturday mornings,” Work said. “… However, when students go out looking for snakes with him, they undoubtedly get a dose of broad natural history as he shows them the native vegetation, invertebrates, reptiles, birds and more that they come across on their trips. “As the national pygmy rattlesnake expert, he regularly fields questions and periodically hosts scientists from around the country,” Work continued. “He has built a network of dedicated researchers who study both the specifics of pygmy rattlesnake biology, ecology and behavior, but also broader questions of ecological and conservation interest.” During Farrell’s sabbatical, that effort paid

off. Farrell published papers on a variety of snake-related topics. Titles included: “Prey Species Influences Foraging Behaviors: Rattlesnake Predation on Little Brown Skinks and Giant Centipedes” (co-authors include Diane McColl ’15); “Tracking Outcomes of Snake Fungal Disease in Free-ranging Pygmy Rattlesnakes” (with Cierra McCoy ’16); “Evaluating Local Adaptation of a Complex Phenotype: Reciprocal Tests of Pygmy Rattlesnake Venoms on Treefrog Prey”; and “Seasonal Testosterone and Corticosterone Patterns in Relation to Body Condition and Reproduction in a Subtropical Pitviper” (with Gabbie Paredes ’17 and Fatima Ramis ’17). Also, Farrell published a book review with Holly Molinaro ’18. “One of my biggest takeaways from working in Dr. Farrell’s lab was the experience of working in a fast-paced collaborative environment,” said McPherson. “I spent a lot of time working with other students and visiting researchers, and got a taste of how ‘real science’ is done, and how members of a research team with different areas of expertise can work together efficiently to produce exciting results.” All part of a day’s work. Or, in this case, a sabbatical. “Snakes are more than just eating machines, and they deserve more credit and sympathy. When people fear snakes less, they treat them better,” Farrell explained, simply. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



From Webby to Reform Faculty are pushing the boundaries of their convention far and wide at Stetson University College of Law.



aw Professor Tim Kaye, Ph.D., has reinvented the legal textbook. In 2016, he publicly launched his “Law of Torts” book as a Webby Book — transforming the traditional legal textbook into a website where interactive and engaged learning could take place. Kaye has since taught courses on Torts and Remedies using Webby Books.

While reading, students can insert comments into the margins alongside the text. They engage with classmates and the professor by responding to one another’s comments. Also, there is a dedicated forum that enables students to discuss topics not directly connected to any specific passage of text. A recently developed feature adds a browser extension called Read Aloud, which makes it possible to use a Webby Book as an audiobook. In June, Kaye attended the Institute for Law Teaching and Learning’s annual conference, hosted by Gonzaga University School of Law in Spokane, Washington. While there, Kaye was joined by Stetson law student Anna Parsons to co-present a demonstration of the Webby Books learning platform. The presentation received rave reviews. On Nov. 16-17 in Orlando, they are scheduled to present at the Faculty Resource Network’s national symposium, “Transforming Teaching Through Active Learning,” hosted by Stetson. As it turns out, that symposium’s title is especially appropriate, considering other recent activity among faculty at the College of Law: Law Professor Rebecca Morgan, J.D. ’80, is the Boston Asset Management chair in Elder Law and co-director of the Center for Excellence in Elder Law at Stetson. That’s just for starters. In addition, Morgan is co-authoring an article on examining criminal appellate opinions where the perpetrator used a financial power of attorney to financially exploit a vulnerable adult. This summer, Morgan also worked with elder law center co-director Professor Roberta Flowers, J.D., on two grants. One grant from the Office of the State Court Administrator involves production of video content for a self-directed online training for judges and attorneys on several specific aspects of Florida guardianship law. The other project, funded by the May and Stanley Smith Charitable Trust and the Poses Family Foundation, focuses on pooled special-needs trusts.


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Tim Kaye, Ph.D.

Rebecca Morgan, J.D.

This fall, Law Professor Judith A.M. Scully, J.D., returned from a summer abroad, teaching a course at The Hague (The Netherlands) on International Human Rights in U.S. Policing. Scully used the case study of police torture cases in Chicago, which she first encountered while practicing as a young civil rights attorney in Chicago. The cases took place for more than a decade, involving police violence and torture used against more than 200 African-American men. The case study, according to Scully, touches on many legal issues across state, federal and civil prosecutions. Scully worked with hundreds of clients, lawyers, special prosecutors, public officials, city government and nonprofits to push for an order of review of the cases. Two decades later, the International Commission on Human Rights Committee on Torture and Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination took the cases. After three decades of persistent advocacy, many individuals who were tortured by police into making false confessions were exonerated. Further, a police officer was convicted, and reparations were made to victims and their families in the form of damages, a memorial and counseling services and free college tuition. Also, a required educational programming was established about human rights and police violence in the state of Illinois. Notably, Scully, co-coordinator of Stetson’s Social Justice Advocacy program, uses the case in her course as well as part of presentations at other law schools. And she has written a law-review article, plus is writing a second article on the cases. A book is in her future, too. Scully is working on a narrative nonfiction novel, to be published in 2020, about the redemptive story of a 14-year-old boy who was tried as an adult (facing 30 years in prison). The book will explore the harm of trying children as adults. Scully was the boy’s attorney and rallied the community in support of his character. Later acquitted, the boy grew into an advocate for social justice. Law Professor Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, J.D., the LeRoy Highbaugh Sr. research chair, is spending the year writing a book about the intersection of political branding and commercial branding. The working title is “Political Brands.” She teaches election law at Stetson, along with corporate governance, business entities and constitutional law. For years interested in how commercial brands interact with politics, Torres-Spelliscy had written a law-review article on the topic. The book will expand on numerous issues that arise when brands get involved in politics. She hopes to finish the book in 2019. Two years ago, she published “Corporate Citizen? An Argument for the Separation of Corporation and State” (Carolina Academic Press). Not coincidentally, Torres-Spelliscy has testified before Congress and state and local bodies as an expert on campaign finance reform, and has helped draft legislation and Supreme Court briefs. She is the chair of the Election Law Section of the Association of American Law Schools and is a fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School.

Judith A.M. Scully, J.D.

Ciara Torres-Spelliscy, J.D.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



In a school-record performance, Hatters are winning big in the classroom.



eveloping as an athlete at Estero High School in southwest Florida, Arye Beck always had his sights on competing at the Division I level. Beck, who was named area Runner of the Year in 2015, also was a standout in the classroom. So, when it became time to decide on a college that would meet all of Beck’s needs, Stetson came out on top.

“With Stetson, I was able to be both the athlete and have the smaller school and also have a good education with it, which is hard to find,” said Beck, a sophomore on the men’s cross country team who earned ASUN All-Freshman team honors, finishing with four of the top 10 fastest 8,000-meter race times in school history. In homeland Latvia, among other early achievements on the volleyball court, Eva Deisa participated in the 2014 U-19 European Championship as well as European Qualification for the U-20 World Championship in 2015. A year later, Deisa started 18 matches for the Hatters, showcasing versatility that resulted in five matches with double-digit “kills” (hitting an unreturnable ball) and six matches with double-digit “digs” (preventing the ball from hitting the floor on defense). Also, she made the academic Honor Roll for the ASUN Conference. 52

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Arye Beck

Beck: “With Stetson, I was able to be both the athlete and have the smaller school and also have a good education with it, which is hard to find.” Deisa: “I don’t want to just focus on being an athlete.”

“I don’t want to just focus on being an athlete,” Deisa described. “I want to be a great student, too. I want to prove that you can be good at both.” Arye Beck and Eva Deisa are only two of the Hatters this fall who are more than living up to the label of student-athlete. Much like their GPAs, they are going above and beyond to help set new standards of excellence — away from sports. The same goes for the spring sports.

Eva Deisa

Consider these scoreboard numbers: 180 and 3.0. Those were the final tallies of the ASUN Honor Roll during the 2017-2018 school year, which contained a record total of 180 Stetson student-athletes receiving academic distinction for posting a 3.0 GPA or better. In all, 73.5 percent of Stetson’s ASUN student-athletes earned a spot on the Honor Roll, establishing another school record. Notably, the numbers include all fall sports, such as cross country and volleyball, along with the spring sports. (Student-athletes from football and men’s and women’s rowing compete in other conferences and were not included in the ASUN totals.) Further, in late May, the NCAA’s multiyear Academic Progress Rate report for all Division I athletics teams nationwide revealed that nearly all of Stetson’s 17 NCAA Division I sports performed well above the minimum threshold. Three of Stetson’s programs recorded perfect scores on the four-year report: beach volleyball, men’s cross country and women’s golf.

STUDENT-ATHLETES “The quality of Stetson’s faculty and the rigorous academic program make this record-setting achievement very noteworthy,” commented Jeff Altier, Stetson’s director of athletics, about the ASUN Honor Roll. “While our coaches recruit smart, disciplined students to become athletes at Stetson, having them as a group achieve a grade-point average in excess of 3.0 is exceptional.” For the record, the Athletics mission statement at Stetson is centered on “creating a culture of champions within and outside of competition.” Altier used the term “academic champions.” In other words (or letters), getting Ws also involves victorious GPAs. Not that such success comes without setbacks. As a first-year Hatter in 2016, Deisa only started in those 18 matches because an injury sidelined her for the remainder of the season. The same occurred last fall, when injury again cut her season short. Still, she maintained her standing on the ASUN Honor Roll. “The big reason I chose Stetson was for its academics,” Deisa said, simply. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



DeFilippo: “For me, just because one thing was down, I wasn’t going to let my other thing, academics, go down.”

Arriving on campus in 2014, Gaven DeFilippo didn’t see any varsity football action that year, playing only in three junior-varsity games. Nor did he play in a game his second year at Stetson. Then in 2016, DeFilippo became the Hatters’ starting quarterback and, with fine performances, began to emerge as a team leader — only to have injury return him to the

Gaven DeFilippo


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sidelines for both the rest of that season and all of 2017. Nonetheless, DeFilippo stayed at Stetson, received an undergraduate degree with a double major in sport business and marketing and was elected to the Pioneer Football League Academic Honor Roll for the fourth time. “It was awful for me, and I felt bad for my teammates,” DeFilippo said about being injured in 2016. “I was a leader, and I was there to try to help us win. But it made me shift roles and become a different type of leader for our team. And I was able to hone in on some skills that maybe before the injury I didn’t even know I had — developing leadership skills. “For me, just because one thing was down, I wasn’t going to let my other thing, academics, go down. I always had the long-term vision in mind that I wanted to go to grad school; I wanted to be successful. So, just because I’m down in one area I wasn’t going to let it affect me twice. … I wasn’t going to let one thing beat me twice, essentially.” This fall, DeFilippo is back on the field as a graduate student pursuing an M.B.A. Because of injury time lost, he has two years of football eligibility remaining. Not coincidentally, a common theme among Hatter head coaches is commitment. “We want kids who want to be the first in whatever they do, whether it be in the classroom, in the weight room, on the field or in the community,” said Roger Hughes, Ph.D., head football coach, now in his sixth season on campus after spending 10 seasons as head coach at Princeton University. “So, we tell kids in recruiting that if you don’t like that kind of pressure or you don’t have the drive to be the best in every facet of your life, Stetson may not be your place, because we are going to demand that from you. “We aren’t necessarily expecting valedictorians. However, if you are able to get a B-plus, then you better get the B-plus. And, if your skill set allows you to help in the community, which all of us do, then you better dedicate enough time to do that, as well.” Similarly, volleyball coach Yang Deng cites the recruiting process, calling the university’s academic rigor “probably our number-one selling point.”

Roger Hughes, Ph.D., head football coach

Manoj Khettry, women’s soccer coach

“We want our student-athletes to be leaders in all facets of the experience of being a Stetson student-athlete, and doing well academically is integral to achieving excellence.” — Manoj Khettry “We have to recruit kids who are passionate not only for volleyball, but also for academics,” Deng added. As Manoj Khettry entered the fall, he was beginning his sixth season with a 22-member women’s soccer roster containing just three seniors. Eight were newcomers, which points to the importance of continually attracting talented players who “strive for excellence in all aspects of the student-athlete experience.” “We want our student-athletes to be leaders in all facets of the experience of being a Stetson student-athlete, and doing well academically is integral to achieving excellence,” said Khettry, who has coached 12 Hatters to ASUN All-Academic honors. “Stetson emphasizes the holistic development of the person. As such, our athletes are students first and learning, getting an education and obtaining a degree. “Parents see the big picture, and while athletics, and in our case soccer, is a vital component in a player deciding on attending Stetson, parents know that the end game is obtaining a degree and that a Stetson education is meaningful and holds great value in the real world.” Bryan Harmon, in his third season as head coach of the men’s and women’s cross country teams, is sometimes actually OK with losing. “We tell [prospects] you have to come here to be a student first. We lose recruits because of that, and that’s perfectly fine,” Harmon explained. “I’m making the investment in them athletically, and we’re also giving them a chance to invest academically in themselves. … It’s not just about the S on your chest or what you’re running for or who you’re running for. It’s about that investment.”

DID YOU KNOW? News of the ASUN Honor Roll success arrived just one month after the Hatters nearly reached baseball’s College World Series. A total of 25 student-athletes from the team were included on the list, highlighted by star pitcher Logan Gilbert, who graduated in May with a business degree and was selected in the first round of June’s Major League Baseball Draft. Gilbert had returned to school for his senior season despite also being drafted as a junior.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Hatters Around DeLand


embers of Hatter Nation shared their passion for Stetson at events throughout the summer and early fall. To be part of an event near you, contact the Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement at 386-822-7480, alumni@stetson.edu or online at stetson.edu/hatterevents.

From left: Julie Kelly, mother of Nick Kelly ’19; Mary Barney, mother of CJ Barney ’22; Felicia Gallon Parham, mother of Donald Parham ’19 From left: Denise McCammon, mother of Jim McCammon ’19; Lynn Hardman-Craske, mother of Jamieson “Whiskey” Craske ’19 Michael L Yonker ’17 with his mother, Jennifer Yonker From left: Lindsey Morgan, Derrick Williams ’86, Tony Guzzetta ’85 Jacquellyn Martin ’83, Joanna “JJ” Payette ’06


STETSON | Fall 2018

Sarika Ram ’18 (second from left) returns to DeLand with family members to sing the national anthem at Stetson’s game against Marist College. Jaclyn Nesheiwat Stapp ’02 (center) joins Michael Waltz (left) and husband Scott Stapp at a local event — sporting their “Stetsons!”

Sarah Caudill ’06 (second from left) is presented with her 2017 Outstanding Young Alumni Award by Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D.; Kevin Riggs, Ph.D., professor of physics; and Provost Noel Painter, Ph.D. Woody O’Cain (on left), assistant vice president for Alumni and Parent Engagement, joins Steve Roy ’75, chair of The Villages Alumni Chapter, as they wait to tour the new Sandra Stetson Aquatic Center. The 2018 Stetson University Alumni Board poses for a selfie in front of Holler Fountain during the board’s fall meeting.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Hatter Spotlight: Simone Magee ’13 Chicago, Illinois Founder of Dress Downs LLC — the “first reusable and discreet dress weight for women.” BY WO O DY O ’ C A I N


hat was your “Stetson Journey” — where did you come from, how did you get here?

“I was born and raised in Orlando, Florida, and in middle school we took a field trip to Stetson. I didn’t remember everything about the visit, but I did remember enjoying the atmosphere and tour. However, it wasn’t until after my family and I had embarked on a road trip to see every school on my list that Stetson would come back up. We started in Florida, and by the time we got to our last stop in Ohio, after stopping at Auburn, Vanderbilt and Purdue along the way, I knew attending a larger university would never appeal to me. I researched more about Stetson and knew it was the best choice. As the years went on, friends who attended larger universities thought it was mind-blowing I knew the names of the staff on campus, and I thought it was mind-blowing they didn’t.”

How did you come to choose Chicago as your destination city after graduation? “After graduation [bachelor’s degree in business/corporate communications], I kept thinking if you don’t leave now you never will. Florida is my home, which means I could always come back. But the longer I waited, the less likely it would be I would go. It’s nerve-wracking to decide to try something new, but I had to. I had never even been to Chicago. I just knew New York City was too congested, and Los Angeles was too far. Chicago was a two-hour flight, and that meant either I or family and friends could hop on a plane. So, against my parents’ wishes, I packed up my car and drove. Five years ago, my closest friend was five hours away in Ohio, and now I have seven Hatters within a mile — all of whom I had been friends with in college. Chicago has quickly become my home. My first winter was the year of the polar vortex, so now every winter since then has been smooth sailing.”

Can you share a few distinct memories from your days at Stetson? “Can’t believe it’s been five years. Where to begin. Most of my memories aren’t suitable for print, but some of my fondest memories involved being outside in some way. There were days my friends and I would just sit in the quad from the late morning or early afternoon until dinner, each coming and going from classes. The group would grow bigger as the day went on, and we would just enjoy each other’s 58

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company while simultaneously trying and failing to do homework or study. I remember one day it was raining, and we got the great idea to capitalize on it and made a slip-n-slide with a giant tarp. When the rain stopped, we decided to use laundry detergent, as the base for sliding; everyone got rashes after. Also, all things sports-related I was happy to be at or a part of (this is pre-football). Whether it was a baseball or soccer game or a tennis match, I was excited to be there and to cheer on my friends while coming up with new ways to taunt the opposing team. They were also one of the easiest culture credits you could get. It was a win-win situation. “Outside of my A-plus in social activities, I added a minor my junior year after Stetson told me I could graduate early because I had enough credits. Luckily, my parents urged me to delay the real world for as long as possible, so I added marketing to the mix. This meant classes in the LBC [Lynn Business Center], which was completely foreign to me. You mean, I would have elevators to get to the different floors? If you’ve never had to full-on sprint to get to the top floor of Elizabeth Hall so you’re not late to class, you don’t know struggle.

“The personality trait people like most about me, I find the most annoying at times. I would love to be a wallflower. It seems so relaxing and mysterious.” “And who can forget the bear on campus! Want to swim with a manatee? Check out Blue Spring. Want to see a shark? Follow me to New Smyrna Beach. Want to see a bear cub whilst on the way to class? This way, please. I’m still not sure why we didn’t rebrand our mascot to a bear wearing a hat after that. It would’ve worked.”

What were some of the things that you’ve valued the most and have used toward achieving such success? “I don’t know if I would consider myself having achieved success, by any means, but I do think I’m on the way there. I’ve valued my amazing support system, and as an entrepreneur I think you must have one. Because hearing ‘no,’ or worse, nothing at all, can be emotionally draining, and I don’t care how strong you think you are. Especially if you’re hearing ‘no’ from the people of corporations you are aiming to be a part of. I’ve heard hundreds, maybe a thousand, if I sat and counted, of ‘no’s’ before I finally broke through and proved the marketability and value. So, getting a random text, tag on social media, email or card in the mail from people who are cheering you on for your idea is what’s going to help you move forward when all the signs around you are telling you to quit. “Also, being willing to learn and grow. There is always room for improvement. I’ve read the books and listened to the stories of some of what we now consider the world’s brightest minds, and it can put everything into perspective. Airbnb was entirely failing before joining an accelerator program. 409 is called 409 because that’s how many times it took until the formula was perfected. WD-40, you guessed it, 40 times before they worked it out. Nothing is perfect the first time around; every try after that will matter the most.’

Simone Magee in a familiar setting — with Hatters. Top row: Taylor Alvarez ’15, Cathleen Vogelgesang ’14, Emily Hollis ’14, Shannon McCarthy ’15, Sierra Railey ’15. Bottom row: Simone Magee ’13, Cori Hinterleiter ’15, Kate Moreland ’15, Gretchen Lonergan ’15, Alex Paulus ’15, Hailey Hemmer, Kristian Haggerty ’14.

national retailers, expanding the line and building some more of my ideas. Dress Downs wasn’t my first and won’t be the last idea. I got to speak on the floor of the NYSE in April for another idea that I had been working on while trying to secure funding, which was exciting. Apparently, you can’t just ring the bell, either. Trust me, I asked, and they assured me if the bell had rung at that time, full chaos would ensue. It was tempting, but now I want to go back and ring the bell the right way.”

What are three things most people would not know about you?

So, Dress Downs LLC is now getting ready to hit more than 4,100 stores across the nation?

“I think the best movie in the world is ‘Pride & Prejudice’ (Keira Knightley version, 2005), and nobody will ever convince me otherwise. I can watch that movie back-to-back and will still cry every single time. “I had to teach myself how to code this year, and I loved it. “The personality trait people like most about me, I find the most annoying at times. I would love to be a wallflower. It seems so relaxing and mysterious.”

“I’ve had the physical product for about 16 months [as of September 2018]. I quit my full-time job more than two years ago. What’s next is getting into more

Woody O’Cain is assistant vice president of Alumni and Parent Engagement at Stetson University. Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



The sun has set on yesterday’s war-torn Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon).

‘Testament to the Human Spirit’ Visiting once-ravaged lands reveals great promise — along with at least one haunting reminder of failed global progress. BY R I C K KO E T H E ’ 77


pon invitation, I participated in a trip to Vietnam and Cambodia in January and February as part of the Dave Roever Evangelistic Association. I’ve had the privilege of working with Dave’s Warrior Reconnect Program for several years but had never participated in his extensive Vietnam outreach.

It was a truly enlightening experience. Dave Roever is a severely wounded Vietnam veteran who has dedicated his life to serving the military of this country through numerous programs — helping military families, spouses and those who have experienced firsthand the horrors of war in recovery and life-enrichment activities. His ministry also works in supporting the Vietnamese people with outreach programs, training and certification of Christian ministers who will expand Christian ministries throughout the country. In addition, the foundation has developed numerous medical facilities in the country. 60

STETSON | Fall 2018

Vietnam was not my war. I was commissioned in 1977 through Stetson’s Army ROTC program. While I studied the Vietnam War during my 30-year military career, traveling there had not been on my “bucket list.” So, I looked forward to seeing what the country and the people were all about. There were 15 other members of the group, with 12 of them having served in Vietnam, all of whom have made repeated trips back to Vietnam, freely giving of their time and resources in helping the people of Vietnam. A little more context: Following the American exit from the country, the Communist regime instituted a series of economic measures directly from the standard Communist playbook. In particular, there was central, state-level planning and execution of economic goals, along with the collectivization of agriculture, both of which were anathema to the individual creativity that Vietnamese possess.

President Clinton’s normalization of relations with Vietnam in 1995 provided a great impetus for the acceleration of the Vietnamese economy. It’s important to remember that the American commitment in Vietnam, which dated back to World War II (with the Office of Strategic Services — forerunner to the Central Intelligence Agency — providing arms and training to the Vietnamese in their fight against Japanese occupation), had sought to prevent the expansion of Communist China throughout Southeast Asia. Yet, it’s equally important to know that Vietnam and China have been enemies for more than 2,000 years. That old animosity was only put on temporary hold during the Vietnam War. What has transpired since 1975 is open conflict between the two countries (China invaded Vietnam in 1979), growing Vietnamese concerns of China’s rising power and, as a result, a growing desire on the part of the Vietnamese for closer relations with the United States. Currently, high-level visits between the military establishments of both countries and participation by Vietnam in joint military exercises are occurring, and there is growing trade with the United States. On my trip, we traveled throughout the country, from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon), with stops in the Central Highlands and finishing up in Cambodia, visiting locations where the Roever Foundation had activities and programs. Not knowing what to expect, I experienced Vietnamese people being friendly, outgoing, filled with energy and seemingly in nonstop motion. There was no hostility or anger directed against us. I wouldn’t use the words “we were loved” as Americans, but I can categorically say we were greeted with goodwill. With a median age of 30, most Vietnamese have been born since 1975 and have not experienced the ravages of war. They refer to that time as “their father’s and grandfather’s war.” The Vietnam veterans in the group, despite being frequent visitors back to Vietnam, expressed continual amazement at the level of growth that was taking place throughout the country. One observation from a veteran gives some perspective: “Ten years ago, everyone was riding bicycles. Now, everyone has a motorcycle or a car.” Development is not uniform in the country. The North has been given greater attention, which carries over from the War when the Viet Cong were accorded a secondary position of authority after the victory over the South Vietnamese government. However, the level of development is significant. Construction is evident everywhere, and economic progress is marked. The country is officially Communist, but previous attempts at centralization of economic activity and planning are not in place. It shows in the pace and depth of growth. Religious activity is thriving. There are controls in place, but they primarily exist to prevent large-scale, public expressions of religious belief. Our trip finished in Phnom Penh, which afforded an opportunity not only to visit other Roever Foundation activities, but also see a country that was quickly moving forward in terms of economic development. Considering what happened in 1975, with the victory of the Khmer Rouge and the utter genocide inflicted on the population, it’s a remarkable testament to the human spirit. A final thought: In an ironic twist of roles, it was Vietnam that invaded Cambodia and overthrew the Khmer Rouge in 1979, and that also waged a war against their remaining elements, which didn’t end until 1989. Visiting the Killing Fields, where an estimated 1 million to 2 million people were executed from a population of 7 million, remains a visible reminder of what was perpetrated against an entire population — and what in many ways is still taking place throughout the world today.

Above: Rick Koethe ’77: “Not knowing what to expect, I experienced Vietnamese people being friendly, outgoing, filled with energy and seemingly in nonstop motion.” Middle: Remnants from the Killing Fields leave a haunting, visible reminder of the past. Bottom: A toy was left at the Killing Field Memorial in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Rick Koethe ’77 served 30 years of active duty in the U.S. Army. He also held senior positions in the federal government and in the private sector, retiring in 2015 as the humanresources director for the F35 Joint Strike Fighter Program Office in Washington, D.C. Stetson.edu/today | 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 your class note to Stetson University, Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement, 421 N. Woodland Blvd., Unit 8257, DeLand, FL 32723, or email your news to alumni@ stetson.edu. If you are a graduate of the College of Law,


send your class note

Roberta Albrecht ’79, Appleton, Wisconsin, was published in Brill Academic Press, The Netherlands series, “Companions to the Christian Tradition.” Albrecht’s chapter, No. 13, deals with 17th-century poetry, prose, music, linguistics, the new science, philosophy and millenarianism.

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 Stetson.edu/ lawalumninews. We can only use photos that are high-resolution, and because of space limitations, we cannot guarantee use of all photographs.


Robert H. Pinder ’50, Round Rock, Texas, was honored with the Dr. Robert Pinder Student Building at Texas Tech University. Pinder taught Marriage and Family Therapy at Texas Tech for 23 years, along with serving as a pastor at Florida churches and conducting missionary work in Argentina.

STETSON | Fall 2018

NASBA Center for the Public Trust. Barie is a partner with Mauldin & Jenkins, LLC, and previously was chair of the American Institute of CPAs, 2014-2015, and a member of its board, 2010-2016. George D. Romagnoli ’85, New Port Richey, accepted the position of planning and development director for the City of New Port Richey after spending 25 years with Pasco County, including 15 years as the community development director. Simone Marstiller ’88, J.D. ’96, Tallahassee, has been appointed to the Florida Supreme Court’s Judicial Management Council. Marstiller is with the Gunster law firm’s appellate and government affairs teams, Tallahassee and Tampa offices. The council serves as high-level management consultants to the Supreme Court and is responsible for assisting the chief justice in identifying trends, potential crisis situations and the means to address them.


partner at Pursley Friese Torgrimson, has been selected as the “Best Mentor” from a small firm by the Daily Report, the area’s leading legal publication. Aron also is active in various organizations in the legal and real estate communities. Gregory D. Lee ’96, J.D. ’99, Orlando, is one of Orlando Magazine’s “50 Most Powerful 2018: Business.” Lee chairs BakerHostetler’s nationwide sports and entertainment industry practice and coordinates the firm’s local real estate work. Also, since October 2016, Lee has been president of the Orlando Utilities Commission’s governing board. Lara Lee, M.B.A. ’98, Orlando, co-founder of the Foundation for Foster Children, was named one of Orlando Magazine’s “Women of the Year for 2018.” The foundation’s mission is “to enhance the lives of children in foster care through support and advocacy to create opportunities for a brighter future.”


1980s Manuel Farach ’81, Hobe Sound, was named to Florida Super Lawyers’ Top 100 Lawyers list for the fourth consecutive time. Farach is a member of McGlinchey Stafford PLLC’s Fort Lauderdale office. Tommye Barie ’83, Sarasota, will serve on the board of directors of The

Stephanie Friese Aron ’96, Atlanta, Georgia, a founding and managing

Jamie Blucher ’01, Orlando, an attorney with

the law firm Winderweedle, Haines, Ward & Woodman, was selected as a “2018 Florida Super Lawyer Rising Star.”

Loyal Pyczynski ’02, M.B.A. ’15, Los Angeles, California, was promoted to vice president, research and development at Walt Disney Imagineering — delivering innovation in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, and autonomous systems. Ryan Benson ’03, Fort Myers, a principal with A. Vernon Allen Builder, was named president of the Collier Building Industry Association. Benson is a leader in numerous other industry associations, including the Florida Home Builders Association and National Association of Home Builders. John M. Fanelli, M.Ed. ’04, Palm Coast, principal at Buddy Taylor Middle School, was named coordinator of student supports and behavior and will move to the district offices in Bunnell. Elizabeth Tucker Ditslear ’05, M.Ed. ’08, Port Orange, was chosen as Chisholm Elementary School’s Teacher of the Year.

J. Davis Mallory ’06, Nashville, Tennessee, has a new video for his single “Sun & Moon.” Mallory debuted the single at New York’s The West End during Grammy Week. Kristina Tsipouras ’07, Milton, Massachusetts, has advanced her Moroccan Magic, a line of lip balm, from startup to national distribution at drugstore chains. Moroccan Magic is the only woman- and minority-owned, crueltyfree and U.S.D.A. organic small brand available, according to Tsipouras.


Judson Lathe ’10, Jupiter, chief operating officer at Bridge Connector,

has led the company to $10 million in investment funding. Bridge Connector delivers streamlined integration solutions for health care organizations. The funding will help further expand the company’s sales, marketing and client-services efforts, as well as accelerate the platform’s growth in closing the industrywide interoper-ability gap. Aykhan Alibayli ’15, New Haven, Connecticut, received his Master’s in Public Health degree from Yale University in May. Breanna Howell ’15, Lakewood Ranch, graduated in August 2018 from the University of Southern California with a Doctorate in Occupational Therapy. Delaney Christine ’17, Indianapolis, Indiana, is teaching fourth-grade language arts and social studies at Emma Donnan, a charter school.

Stable Startup When Carly Batts ’17 drove to Wyoming after graduating from Stetson, taking along her beloved horse Bear, it was easy finding a room for herself but a very different story for Bear. “It was so hard,” said Batts, former president of Stetson’s Equestrian Club. So, instead of spending a gap year in Wyoming Martha Hunsucker (left) and Carly Batts, friends and applying to law from Stetson’s Equestrian Club, formed Hoofie school, Batts returned USA, an online boarding directory for stables. home with Bear to Stuart, Florida, and in June launched an online boarding directory, called Hoofie USA, with fellow alumna Martha Hunsucker ’17. The two had met their first year at Stetson in the Equestrian Club and eventually became club officers. They came up with the directory name by joining “hoof” and “Google” because they envision the site becoming a search engine for stables across the country. Batts, an environmental science major, and Hunsucker, an English major, established a goal of listing 200 stables nationwide in the directory during year one. Currently, stables pay a small fee to be listed for short- and long-term rentals, including hurricane evacuations. Batts and Hunsucker plan to add an online booking platform next June. An entrepreneurial effort, yes. Also call it a real stable business. — Cory Lancaster

Desperation to discovery: After arriving at Stetson from Celebration High School in Kissimmee, Florida, Darash Desai ’08 didn’t want to stay. A first-generation immigrant who grew up squarely focused on math and science, Desai didn’t know much about a liberal-arts education. That all changed during his time at Stetson, and in August he served as the Stetson 2018 Convocation speaker. Desai (biochemistry and physics), now a senior research specialist at Boston University: “It turned out Stetson had too much to offer to stay locked up in the science building, and thankfully I fell into the right crowd and had the right direction early enough to take full advantage of what Stetson had to offer.”

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Marriages 1 Sylvia Redwine ’87 to William Macguire, Oct. 28, 2017. 2 Will Royall ’04 to Shaleece Martin, June 23, 2018.


3 Callhan Garrett ’11, J.D. ’14 to James Soldavini ’11, May 31, 2018. 4 Chelsea Lincoln ’13 to G. W. Stelter, March 10, 2018.




‘Four Stories’ Ryan Napier ’10 graduated from Stetson with a degree in English. Also, he was a Sullivan Creative Writing scholar and received a Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience grant to work on his fiction. It all paid off. In October, Napier’s first collection of fiction, “Four Stories About the Human Race,” was published by Bull City Press. This description comes from the publisher: “A man in search of a rare pink dolphin, a social media assistant for a pasta sauce company, a newlywed couple on their honeymoon, and too-proud parents of a new baby all have one thing in common: Social media and modern technology have them questioning their reality. Ryan Napier makes us consider the repercussions and anxieties that result from a world that revolves around image.” “This book has a Stetson connection,” Napier says. “In 2010, the Sullivan program paid for me to attend a summer writing program in Prague — which ended up being the setting for the final story in the collection!” — Michael Candelaria


STETSON | Fall 2018

Ryan Napier’s Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience helped to create his published collection.

Box of Surprises




After Megan (Trombino) Pruitt ’08 and Brian Pruitt (Hatter baseball player, 2006-2008) moved to South Carolina for Brian’s career, the couple quickly realized they were going to need to get creative to make time for each other. They were living in a new city while their daughter, Faye, was a toddler, and Megan was pregnant with their second child (son Hudson). Megan began a mission to piece together a unique way for her and her husband to have a “date night in.” She also thought other couples experienced the same challenges. The result: a subscription box service, created in November 2016 with a mere 34 subscribers that grew to 2,000 subscribers by its second month in operation. A business was born. Today, Night In Boxes, successfully tapping into an e-commerce niche, has $4.6 million in sales and exceeds 10,000 subscribers with three product lines, plus there are partnerships with Google, Amazon and Pinterest, according to the Pruitts. Night In Boxes? It’s a “complete night-in delivered to your door monthly, totally taken care of by us with several activities, ambiance, music, snacks, recommended dinner menu and more,” Megan Pruitt described. — Michael Candelaria


Births 5 Caroline Peterson Wieland ’07 and husband William ’07, J.D. ’10, a daughter, Heidi Rose, in March 2018. 6 Lawrence C. Callaway ’76, J.D. ’79 and wife Loxi, a grandson, Claiburn, in March 2018. 7 Kimberly Downes Wilson ’08 and husband Tom, a son, Thomas, in May 2018. 8 Sarah Capria Driscoll ’13 and husband Michael, a daughter, Skara June, in July 2018.

Redefining date night? With $4.6 million in sales, Brian and Megan Pruitt have put a bow on their e-commerce innovation.

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON



Success by the Numbers Thanks to his Stetson education, Randy Ware knows the value of numbers, especially that they “don’t lie.” He began at Stetson in 1980 as an accounting major before a switch to marketing while also taking finance courses. “The Stetson experience was important,” says Ware ’85. Years later, he received another lesson about numbers — this time as a 49-percent company owner, with the 51-percent owner, a childhood friend, calling the shots, eventually leaving Ware on the literal short end. Then in 1997, Ware started WestCMR and entrepreneurial success took hold, finally. Today, his surgical supply company, based in Clearwater, Florida, is a $20 million operation in all 50 states and approximately 60 countries with 55 employees. Also, this summer the company was voted among the top 150 Great Places to Work in Healthcare by Becker’s Hospital Review for the fifth consecutive year. Ware didn’t hire his first employee until 2009 and, at the time, remembers thinking, “Would I want to work here?” He wanted people to emphatically answer, yes. As the company moves past its 22nd anniversary, Ware offers further insight to Hatters everywhere: • Have accountability. “Look in the mirror. Your success and where you go are about what you do about it.” • Hone your interpersonal skills. “While you might get that job, you’ll need to communicate.”

Creating a marketplace for unused surgical supplies, Randy Ware and his WestCMR recently celebrated their 22nd anniversary.

• Be productive. “You don’t get recognized just for showing up to work; you have to contribute.” • Seek advice. “Surround yourself with mentors, and don’t be on an island.” • Dream. “You need to dream; you need to have goals; you need to have vision.” — Michael Candelaria

In Memoriam 1940s




Eloise Kennedy Adcock ’40 Sarah Register Johnson ’49 Suzanne Hopper Weaver ’49

Kenneth R. Evans ’60, J.D. ’67 John L. Green Jr., J.D. ’60 Peggy Curry Leonard ’60 J. P. Cheek ’61 W. Roger Turner, LL.B. ’61 Jack W. Jones ’62 Richard Hagin, LL.B. ’64 Joanne Bennett Brown ’65 Kenneth C. Deacon, LL.B. ’66 Lawrence P. Hastings ’66 Donna Healy Martin ’66 Donald G. Anderson ’67 Robert S. Reese ’67 Frank J. Rouse, J.D. ’67 Elsa Caskey ’69 Wilton L. Strickland, J.D. ’69

Stephen F. Lanier ’71 William Leffler III, J.D. ’74 James Williams ’76 Patricia Pantaleoni, J.D. ’78 Dwight E. Brock ’79

Madeline Mellers ’98 Deborah Bergin, M.B.A./J.D. ’99

1950s John W. Booth, LL.B. ’51 Laird Meffert Manning ’51 Tom O. Tenney ’51 John W. Edwards ’53 Margie Brooks Harth ’53 Hoke H. Shirley ’53 Richard L. Greaves ’54 Arthur A. Fritz ’55 Harvey V. Delzer, LL.B. ’58 Harvey J. Abel, LL.B. ’59 Miles C. McDonnell Sr., J.D. ’59 John S. Oldham ’59


STETSON | Fall 2018

1980s Ruth Schmidt ’80 Elizabeth Mannion, J.D. ’81 Nancy Goldhamer ’83 Dorothy Pessillo, J.D. ’83 Monica McDonough ’86 Kevin H. Bridges ’88 Douglas W. Grissinger, J.D. ’89

2000s Susan Charles, J.D. ’04, LL.M. ’08 Jhaysonn V. Pathak ’07

2010s Gregory T. Holtz, LL.M. ’16


Fond Farewell “Stetson has been a part of me since I was a little girl. I felt something special about this place. “I never dreamed I would come back and work at Stetson for so long. It felt like a calling. This is what I felt that I was to do.” Linda Parson Davis ’73, Special Advisor to the President for Philanthropy, retiring on Jan. 31, 2019, after 41 years of service to her alma mater (See Page 13.) Photo by Brittany Strozzo

Stetson.edu/today | STETSON


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Stetson Magazine  

Fall 2018

Stetson Magazine  

Fall 2018

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