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Friday, August 28, 2009

Emory Cares...do you?

Since joining the EAA staff in 2006, I've discovered there's a lot more to alumni programming than hors d'oeuvres receptions. To my surprise, I learned that alumni were gathering in decidedly more modest settings—inside the chilly warehouses of food banks, ankle-deep in muck left after hurricanes, pulling weeds from between rows of vegetables grown in vacant lots. I learned that for Emory alumni, it's not just about having fun. It's about giving back.

Emory Cares International Service Day is coming up on November 14, and in its sixth year the program is shaping up to be bigger and better than ever. From what began in 2003 as a handful of service projects organized by Renelda Mack 83C, Emory Cares has grown to a worldwide phenomenon that unites Emory alumni, students, parents, and friends in a day of service to their communities. In the last two years, close to 2,000 people participated in more than 100 service projects around the world, all in the name of Emory Cares. And they took lots of pictures—visit our online Emory Cares photo album to see images of the amazing projects that our chapters organized in 2008.

For many chapters, organizing and participating in an Emory Cares service project has become an annual tradition. For the Korean Chapter of Emory Alumni, that tradition has brought them together for the past three years (continuing into the fourth this November) to give back to some of the neediest members of their community. Korea has a long history with Emory—the connection goes back to Yun Ch'i-Ho 93 (that's 1893)Ox 1908H, Emory's very first international student.

Since 2006, the Korean Chapter has been volunteering their time, energy, and spirit to help out residents at homes for the elderly and disabled in Seoul. Their devotion to the Emory Cares program has touched the lives not only of these residents, but also drawn the chapter closer together and strengthened their bond to their alma mater.

This November, you can be a part of an international network of Emory volunteers who will work side by side to give back in their own neighborhoods. Service projects are in the works for nearly 40 cities in seven countries, so there's bound to be an opportunity to serve in your area. And if you don't see your city listed, think about organizing a service project for alumni in your area! Visit the Emory Cares homepage to learn how. Then connect with other participants on Facebook, and help spread the word!

Emory Cares International Service Day: it's about giving back. (And having fun while we're at it!)

-- Kerry Gallo, Emory Cares Program Coordinator, RSPH student

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Photo of the Day: Coke Toast 2009

EAAvesdropping mentioned last Saturday's traditional Coke toast in Monday's post; today, we thought you might want to see it. Every year, President Jim Wagner steps up to the McDonough Field stage and raises a bottle to welcome incoming freshmen and their parents to the Emory community.

He's a pro, too. Notice that the label is clearly visible. (You may have to click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Joining him in support are all of Emory's orientation leaders (you can see them just behind the president). Many are dressed in the colors of Clemson University, but that's necessary because new students are grouped based on the color of their leaders' shirts and they have to be easy to spot. Believe us ... the Class of 2013 will see more than enough blue and gold over the next four years.

Not that that's a bad thing.

They'll also drink a lot of Coca-Cola.

Again, not a bad thing.

Update: Check out the comments for the full story behind the t-shirt colors!

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Class of 1959 - UNCENSORED!

We all know that Emory students work hard, but true to the adage, they play hard, too. In honor of their 50-year reunion (see the photos), we asked the Class of 1959 to tell us their funniest and fondest memories at Emory … if you think they were tame, guess again.

While we don’t exactly endorse all these hilarious memories, (don’t get mad at us, legal!), we’re sure Emory’s Lord of Misrule is silently tipping his hat to the follies from his former freshmen. In any case, get ready for a fresh insight into Emory and the lively generation that launched the Swingin’ 60s after the books were closed.

To protect the guilty, we're only using initials ...

– “An ATO pledge pouring an aquarium full of salamanders on [a student] to wake him up for class.” J.A.

– “Getting orange juice from the McTyeire Hall vending machines, mixing it with vodka and trying to type a term paper.” M.B.

– “The raid where one of my fraternity brothers was encountered by Dean Reese in the lobby of a girls’ dorm. The Dean handed him a clipboard and told him to sign his name. He handed it back unsigned and jumped out of a window.” K.K.

– “One of my SAE frat brothers had a pretty blond girlfriend from Atlanta who attended Georgia State. When she said she might transfer to Emory, she was asked if she would commute. “No, I’ll live at home and drive back and forth.” R.C.F.

Although the Class of 1959 celebrated their 50-year departure from dear ol’ Emory this past May during Emory Commencement Weekend, the 5-Year through 45-Year reunions are gearing up for a launch during this year’s jam-packed Homecoming Weekend, slated for September 24-26.

It doesn’t have to be a reunion year for alumni to come back to campus, though—this year we’ve got plenty for everyone, from the Big, Bold, Blue & Gold Homecoming Parade and tailgate followed by the Homecoming soccer game, to faculty lectures, campus tours, social mixers, art exhibits, awards dinners, and more! (We’re Emory, so naturally we’re overachievers).

This year take your own trip down “mEmory” lane and make some new memories with old friends at Homecoming... although we would recommend that you try to not follow every example you see below.

While some of the side-stitching memories of the most useful lessons learned sound slightly painful:

– “Take the grade I earned and not to accept an opportunity to volunteer to be a part of an “experiment.” (Psych. 101). I still got a “C” and have bad memories of being shocked for wrong answers.” S.S.

and others could have Dooley rolling over in his grave:

– “In my senior year, 2 fraternity brothers and I stole Dooley’s Coffin and kept it in hiding on N. Highland Dr. We hoped there would be a hoopla about it—nothing. So 3AM one morning when DVS had its public initiation we put it in the center of campus.” D.G.

We did find a trend—rarely were any two of the funniest memories alike (unless it was exactly the same memory). It looks like every alumnus who comes through Emory’s Haygood-Hopkins Gate takes a different, individually tailored experience with them when they leave.

This got us wondering: What are your best memories of Emory? Whether it’s sneaking into your old freshman dorm your senior year after Dooley’s Ball, making your pledge deliver flowers to the love of your life, the time you pranked called Wingnuts or ate at Dooley’s Den (now the Depot) for a week straight just to avoid DUC food—we want to hear about it. If you need some inspiration, check out some more of the Class of 1959’s best memories below…

– “Also met my soulmate and love of my life at Emory … In December 2009 we will celebrate 50 years of marriage.” H.B.

– “The time the grad students in Geology filled a large plastic bag with natural gas, put a fuse on it, lit the fuse and let it go from the track. Lit up the whole campus!” R.S.

– "Struggling through the swimming class where I and many other “landlubbers” were “drownproofed!” J.D.
– “Can’t tell some of my funniest memories :-)” N.B.

So make Dooley proud and dish the details!

- Cassie Young 07C, program coordinator, EAA

Monday, August 24, 2009

In the heart of dear old Emory

They actually sang the alma mater. In tune, right words and everything. Four thousand voices, led by President Jim Wagner and a couple of dozen upperclassmen, marked the Class of 2013's first day at Emory with song.

Saturday, August 22, was freshman move-in and the start of Orientation Week for new students in the Emory College of Arts & Sciences. The morning started with a little bit of cloud cover and a remarkable coolness in the air. Not the typical heat and oppressive humidity of an August morning in Atlanta, but a crisp hint of fall before the day began to warm up. It was appropriate weather for the start of an academic season and very welcomed by the students, families, and staff (including President Wagner and his cabinet) who were hauling boxes into the freshman residence halls.

The Class of 2013 has a lot of mosts associated with it. Most culturally diverse, most geographically diverse, most prepared in terms of academics, etc. On Saturday, what was most evident is that they are young and excited. They looked fresh out of the package, completely lacking that slightly jaded, cooler-than-thou attitude that seems to arise with finishing a semester or two of college.

I worked the Orientation Fair on Saturday and got to watch the crowd change as the day went on. Early in the morning I saw whole families with a student in tow, but as the afternoon wore on I saw many more students come through together. New roommates (and new friends) exploring campus for the first time stopped by the table.

The clusters of students sans families grew larger during the President’s Dinner and Coke Toast that evening. While Mom & Dad desperately tried to get a cell signal on McDonough Field in order to find their newly-minted freshman, the students gladly flocked together through the line for barbecue.

The dinner and Coke Toast marks the Class of 2013's official welcome to Emory and induction to the Emory alumni community of more than 108,000 strong. They were welcomed indeed, by Emory Alumni Board (EAB) President Crystal Edmonson 95C, who led the ceremony, and President Wagner, who reminded them to cherish every moment of the time they spend here. Aluminum bottles clinked, toasts were drunk, and new friends shared a meal and a Coke. Best of all, when the crowd stood to sing the alma mater, everyone sang along.

--Kate Lawlor 01C, director of alumni and student leadership, EAA

Friday, August 21, 2009

Success After Emory

"Success After Emory."

That would actually make a great tagline for the EAA. Alas, it's already taken.

The Emory College of Arts and Sciences just launched the 2009 edition of its web feature, Success After Emory, and it's pretty spiffy. Success After Emory is an impressively designed collection of 34 profiles highlighting the accomplishments (and future plans) of our newest alumni. Be careful when you're scrolling through the photos, though. The remarkable stories of these new graduates might make you wonder what in the world you've been doing since you graduated.

Or maybe that's just me.

To give you just an inkling of what you'll read: former Student Government Association President Maria Town 09C is staying at Emory and will be working for the University's Office of Disability Services. On the other end of the geographical spectrum, Ann Horn 09C is moving to Africa to work with a nonprofit, Grassroot Soccer, that helps with HIV/AIDS education.

Many new graduates will be continuing their education. Zachary Nadler 09C is one example. He'll be at the University of California studying astroparticle physics. Several other of our young alumni will be taking some time off, just to get some perspective on life after college.

Success After Emory also includes several video profiles and well as some class statistics.

Well, what are you waiting for, go there now! And if you like, check out our successful 2008 graduates.

--Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Chinese food ... in Mumbai

Throughout August, the EAA has hosted a series of Let's Go Emory! parties. The parties give the Emory community an opportunity to send incoming students off to Georgia in style.

More than a dozen Let's Go! parties took place across the U.S., but that was far from their limits. On Friday, August 14, 16 alumni, parents, current students, and almost-students got together on the other side of the world, Mumbai, India, to toast the University.

Karan Kothari 10B organized the celebration, which took place at the China Garden restaurant (a fun place at least according to the photos, see above). He emailed us an update, and it sure sounded like everyone had a great time.

"It was an excellent opportunity for parents, who are sending their children thousands of miles away from home, to understand what it means to live and study at Emory," Kothari wrote. "It helps ease their anxiety."

"Everyone had a lot of questions," Kothari continued. "They were surprised to know we have an alumni chapter here in Mumbai and that we had arranged something for them. This event was a great idea for the incoming students, it really helps them get started at Emory."

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Photo of the Day: It's almost time

This weekend marks new student orientation for the Class of 2013, so we thought we'd tease you a little bit. Classes once again will be meeting on the Quadrangle very soon ...

Monday, August 17, 2009

Photo of the Day: Pitts Theology Library

This is how an ant sees the Pitts Theology Library--or maybe how a freshman sees it (sorry about that; it was too easy).

With more than 520,000 volumes, Pitts is one of the largest theological libraries in the country. And it serves as a vibrant research center for scholars in the Candler School of Theology. With its location overlooking the Quadrangle, Pitts is one of Emory's most prominent--and picturesque--buildings. No matter what the angle.

Friday, August 14, 2009

It's the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts!

The Schwartz Center was dedicated on February 1, 2003. The view above is from the front, facing North Decatur Road. The 2003 inscription is on the west side of the building; you can see it from the Allen Family Plaza. A slightly better look is provided by the photo below.

Thanks to those of you who emailed us with guesses. Every once in a while EAAvesdropping will feature more close-up photos and we'll ask you again, 'Where in the Emory World?"

Have a great weekend.

I want to ride my bicycle

So, I have a little secret. Some might think it’s not a big deal, but I definitely count it as a skeleton in my closet. I’ll tell you what it is in a little bit--let me work up the courage.

I love being on my bicycle. I hit 5,000 miles on my current one just a couple of weeks ago. I can take my husband on three out of five climbing sprints. I’ll get on my bike before I drink a cup of coffee. Am I a serious cyclist? Not really, but sometimes I look like one.

Okay, time for the secret. I’ve ridden 5,000 miles and countless hours. BUT I HAVE NEVER CHANGED MY OWN TIRE! Why not? I’ve got five bike-riding boy friends who take care of everything I need. With my own team of mechanics, who needs women’s lib? But I live in secret fear of the day when I’m on a ride and hear the dreaded hiss that will tell me I’m stranded 20 miles from home. I finally decided to do something about it.

On Thursday, August 13, Alumnae & Women of Emory (AWE) sponsored a cycling clinic with Sorella, a women’s cycling club in Atlanta. We all gathered at Peachtree Bikes; it was a great group. Some women hadn’t been on a bicycle since they were 7, others were thinking about racing. The best part was . . . I wasn’t the only one with a secret. How to change a tire was hands-down the most frequently asked question.

Did I learn how to change a tire? Absolutely. I also learned about the geometry of women’s specific bikes. And how to choose the best bike shorts (more important than you think.) And that you should replace your helmet every three years.

Best of all, I met a couple of other women who might turn out to be great riding partners. In fact, AWE is talking about working with the Sorellas to do a group ride in the fall. Will I be there? You bet. And I’ll help you change your tire if you get a flat.

--Kate Lawlor 01C, director of alumni and student leadership, EAA

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Photo of the Day: Where in the Emory world?

... was this photo taken? Pictures like this are what happens when photographers go crazy with their hi-tech zooming technology.

What building is this? Here's a hint ... it was dedicated in 2003. Or maybe the guy who built it was named Joe Twothousandthree. We're not sure.

But we'll do some research and have the answer for you tomorrow. If you have any guesses, though, just let us know!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

'Live' and No. 1

Emory is number 1 all over the place. In your hearts, around the country, in the classroom, on the court ... and on the music charts.

Sugarland's new CD Live on the Inside debuted this week at number 1 on the charts. It's the second consecutive number 1 album for the Country Music Association and Grammy Award-winning duo of Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush 92C.

EAAvesdropping been a fan of the duo for quite some time and is excited not just about the CD but also about the DVD that accompanies it.

It's an inspired package. Most CD/DVD collections offer identical content. The CD is basically an audio version of the DVD. Yay.

Not Live on the Inside. The DVD is a pretty straightforward (albeit extremely entertaining and energetic) concert video. The CD, though, has some gems. Of course, it includes live versions of several Sugarland hits, but the best parts are the covers. Not content to rest on their mainstream country laurels, Nettles and Bush tackle a variety of hits from artists ranging from Pearl Jam to Beyonce to Kings of Leon.

Having seen Sugarland live before, we can vouch for their creativity and musical chops (particularly Kristian, who certainly learned some of his moves while an Emory student).

The only gripe (and it's a small one) is that the show was recorded in Lexington, KY. Now, EAAvesdropping has been to Lexington and it's a nice place, but it would have been doubly special to record the DVD at one of Sugarland's shows in Georgia (they performed at Gwinnett Arena in Duluth and the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Alpharetta on this tour).

Still, it'll be nice to have a keepsake from the show. The t-shirt is cool, but those things do fade after a while.

--Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Photo of the Day: Seney Hall

Seney Hall opened on the Oxford campus in 1881, and its beauty didn't diminish when Emory College moved to Atlanta in 1915. It remains a center of academic life at Oxford College, and Seney's Hall's walls (which do talk if you listen closely) can weave a web of fascinating stories. From the origins of its remarkable bell to its flirtation with superstardom in the 1970s and 80s (you can skip to the 55 second mark if you want, but the video is more entertaining in its entirety) to more recent visitors of the four-legged kind, Seney Hall has experienced more varied Emory history than perhaps any other campus building.

Monday, August 10, 2009

License to thrill

Emory uncovers fans in lots of interesting places. Last last week, for instance, the EAA received an email from Germany.

That's not out of the ordinary, 130 alumni live in Germany (our fifth largest population outside the U.S.), the Emory Travel Program visits there, and we've held an Emory Cares International Service Day project in Frankfurt. So, we're not strangers.

The email, though, didn't come from an alumnus. It came from a German visitor who spent some time earlier this summer in Georgia. He complimented our state, our people and ... our license plates.

Specialty license plates are hardly a new thing, and in Georgia, sometimes it appears there is a a distinctive license plate for everyone, regardless of interest or species. Among the most popular interest plates are those honoring Georgia colleges and universities. Nearly 30 of them (as well as few questionable interlopers) are honored with license plates in this state.

Our German friend Michael (not his real name since I didn't ask permission to write about him), is member of the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association (ALPCA), and he asked us if we could help him find an Emory license plate to add to his collection.
I thought it would be easy. Not so much.

The tags, beyond the more than 1,500 already on Georgia cars, are collectors items already. If someone's Emory plate has outlived its usefulness, the next stop is not someone's yard sale or garbage can. It's a den wall or garage peg board. It's something to be displayed and treasured. Which, I guess gives the ALPCA--an organization that sounds pretty cool if you're into that sort of thing--a reason for being.

So far we haven't found an unused Emory tag laying around, but we're still looking. A few weeks back, we cleaned out the storage closet at the Miller-Ward Alumni House and found magazines from 20 years ago as well as enough old t-shirts to wrap around Candler Library.

Such lairs are where license plates live.

--Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA     

Friday, August 7, 2009

Photo of the Day: Miller-Ward Alumni House (and a goodbye)

The official University headquarters for alumni activities, the Miller-Ward Alumni House is named for Prentice Miller 27C 28G, who was the first dean of Emory alumni, and Judson C. "Jake" Ward 33C 36G, the current dean of alumni. Dr. Ward celebrated his 97th birthday this past spring and still comes in to work at Miller-Ward every week!

For the past few months, Miller-Ward has been my workplace as well. (It is just as beautiful inside. The trade-off is that my office is the same temperature as Siberia. Approximately.)

Sadly, this is my last day as an intern at the EAA, and so I bid you farewell. I've been feeling a bit nostalgic, given that: a) I no longer have a legitimate excuse to hang around Emory's campus every day; b) the EAA is preparing for the arrival of Emory's undergraduates in a couple of weeks, my fellow EAA interns are now on their way back to college, and in the midst of that back-to-school rush I will be heading into the dreaded "real world"; and c) this internship has been amazing. Where else can you play around on Facebook, sip champagne at exclusive fashion events, browse through Alice Walker's literary archives, and call it all "work"?

OK, so there was serious work, too. I've been able to build a more extensive portfolio here than I have anywhere--full of everything from articles for Emory Report to videos from EAA events; from a new design for this blog to pieces in EmoryWire; from the launch of the EAA's Facebook fan page to...you get the idea. It's been a busy summer!

And while I'm a little wistful today, I'm also excited to put all the skills that I've honed here at the EAA to good use at my new communications job at The Galloway School.

Until next time! Or the next alumni event in Atlanta.

-- Erin Crews 09C 09G, communications intern, EAA

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Photo of the Day: Celebration Emory, New York City

The Emory University Symphony Orchestra, led by Director of Orchestral Studies Richard Prior, plays at Celebration Emory, a Campaign Emory event in New York City, on Feb. 26, 2009. More than 350 guests attended the event at the New York Marriott Marquis, including University President Jim Wagner and Emory Alumni Board President Crystal Edmonson 95C.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Photo of the Day: Callaway

The Callaway Center--formally known as the Loula Walker and Ely Reeves Callaway Sr. Memorial Center (bonus: can you spot the grammatical error in that title?)--has been the most confusing, labyrinthine building on campus since it was renovated in 1996. Seen here from Bowden Hall across the Quad, Callaway once housed the physics department, but is now the place to find lost humanities students and even a few bewildered professors.

At the building's dedication, Ely R. Callaway Jr. 40C quipped that when he was an undergraduate at Emory, he was "always too scared to even come in the physics building. I feel a lot more comfortable with it now. I think I could pass something in this building."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Photo of the Day: Jones Room balcony

The Robert W. Woodruff Library's Jones Room, which the EAA recently visited for a discussion of the Alice Walker exhibit, comes complete with a balcony that overlooks the heart of Emory's campus. This secluded hangout is a popular lunch spot among Emory employees (and a handy procrastination station for undergraduates, when it's open).

Photo by Cassandra Young 07C

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cocktails on the coast

The Westchester/Fairfield Chapter of Emory alumni held its annual Cocktails on the Coast event at Splash Restaurant on Thursday, July 23. Splash is known for having the best waterfront dining in Connecticut, so I was excited to get there for the amazing views, tasty food, and to hang out with Emory alumni!

The day started out beautifully, but as the evening approached, it began pouring down rain. I thought, "What if nobody comes?" and was nervous that all of the chapter's planning and hard work would be swept away by the rain.

But when I arrived at Splash, I was struck by the sight of the beautiful Long Island Sound. Even though it was raining, it was still lovely (although I didn’t get the chance to hang out at the white sand bar--I will save that for a sunnier trip!).

Despite the daunting traffic and less-than-stellar weather, Emory alumni and friends soon started to arrive. We ended up having 45 people at the event! The room was spacious and elegant, the company was great, and the cocktails and appetizers--everything from sushi to steak skewers--were delicious.

Everyone had a great time--we had so much fun it was hard to leave. The only reason I snuck out at 10:00 p.m. was that the last train from Connecticut to Manhattan was leaving at 10:30 p.m.! I made it...barely.

-- Dina Choate, assistant director of regional programs, EAA