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Monday, February 28, 2011

Photo of the Day: Meet the 2011 Bobby Jones Scholars

Meet the 2011-12 class of Bobby Jones Scholars (from left to right): Jibran Shermohammed 11C, Rylee Sommers-Flanagan 11C, Garrett Turner, 11C, and Justiss Kallos 11C.

The Bobby Jones Scholarships, among Emory's most prestigious student awards, honor the legendary golfer and 1927 alumnus of the School of Law. Not only do the scholarships fund a year's study at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland for the recipients, they also cover select St. Andrews students who study at Emory.

The Emory Wheel has a great story that includes a lot more information on the scholars, who were honored at a reception in the Math and Science Center on Thursday, February 24.

To see more images from the reception, visit the EAA's photo page.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

What are you doing Saturday afternoon?

At 4:00 p.m., write down “watching the Emory men’s basketball game.” Whether you live in Atlanta and can attend in person or are outside the city and access the live stats, don’t miss the Eagles’ final game of the year when they host Rochester. At 19–5 (10–3 UAA), second place in the conference is assured, but a NCAA tournament bid could be on the line. 2010–11 is already Emory’s most successful campaign in 20 years.

An OT loss on the road last weekend at Carnegie Mellon torpedoed any chance for the Eagles to challenge for a University Athletic Association (UAA) title that they haven’t won since 1990, but that’s just a small blip on what has been a stellar season.

All year, head coach Jason Zimmerman has instilled in his team a sense of discipline and smart play that’s refreshing, and unleashed an offense that can score points in huge bunches either in transition or the half court.

Leading the way is junior point guard Austin Claunch (16.2 ppg, 7.4 apg), who not only paces the team in scoring, he is one of the nation’s leaders in assists, owns a 2.95 assist-to-turnover ratio (excellent), and after setting the school record for assists in a game (12) in the fall, he tied it twice in the spring.

Claunch (pictured above with no. 21 Corey Spraggins) is certainly one of the reasons why the Eagles are good this year, but they are also a lot of fun to watch. Sophomore Alex Greven (14.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg) sinks shots that most of us wouldn’t even try in games of HORSE, 6-foot-6 sophomore post player Michael Friedberg (8.2 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.2 bpg) has developed into a force inside, junior Alex Gulotta (11.8 ppg) is a sniper from outside (he hits 46.4% of his three-point attempts), and freshman Jake Davis is the team’s leading rebounder (6.5 per game) and third-leading scorer (13.6 ppg) even though he doesn’t start.

And the team is going to be good next year, too. Really good. The Eagles graduate just two seniors, and only one of them, Julien “Juice” Williams (8.1 ppg, 4.8 rpg), an excellent two-way player, is a starter.

A win against Rochester, the conference champion and the No. 14 team in the nation according to d3hoops.com, could mean a great deal for Emory, which is a bubble team for the Div. III national tournament.

The Emory women’s game against Rochester kicks off the doubleheader at 2:00 p.m. Since it’s the last game of the year for both teams—and home courts really do offer an advantage—let’s send the regular season off in style.

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A voyage to the Carter Center

See the photos from Voyages: The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database.

One thing that consistently amazes me about Voyages: The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database is that no matter how much you surf through the site, no matter how much you read about the groundbreaking program, you always learn something new.

The thing that sticks out in my mind from Tuesday night’s Voyages event at the Carter Center is one of the voyages itself. For those of you unfamiliar with Voyages, please visit its website or our review of the EAA’s Voyages event in Washington, DC, in November 2009. I’ll wait.


During his 30-minute presentation, David Eltis, Robert W. Woodruff Professor of History and the founder of the database, guided the evening’s 160 guests on a journey through the site, and one of the places he stopped stuck in my mind.

Eltis pointed out Voyage No. 36990, the database’s final documented landing of a slave ship in the United States. The Clotilda docked in Mobile, AL with 110 captives onboard in 1860.

Many of the descendants of the slaves taken from that ship live in the Mobile area.

The importation of slaves became illegal in the United States in 1808, more than 50 years earlier. I’m not sure if I’m more stunned that the slave trade in North America continued so deep into the 19th century or that there was a record of the landing. I mean, if I’m going to do something illegal, I’m not going to write it down.

However, in this case, I’m glad that someone did. It puts a nice, boldface checkmark in a box that reads “Things we must never let happen again.”

Eltis made other memorable points. “What do we make of U.S. owners in the lead up to American independence who named their slave ships, ‘Liberty’? And after independence, ‘The Fourth of July’?” he said.

A fine question.

The evening’s subject matter was serious, no question, but the atmosphere was anything but gloomy. Eltis' presentation was bookended by vibrant receptions that not only included electronic tours of the website (such as the self-guided one being taken by Octavius White and Nya Karanga 03PH), but food that encouraged third and fourth visits to the table.

Other highlights included a welcome from President Jim Wagner and a reading by Kevin Young, Atticus Haygood Professor of English and Creative Writing. Young, whose dramatic presentation of two poems, “Westville” and “Con” from his latest collection, Ardency: A Chronicle of the Amistad Rebels, was noteworthy for its drama (which was palpable) and its subject matter (the aftermath of the famous mutiny aboard the slave ship Amistad).

Voyages, and its follow-up, African Origins, are constantly evolving, just as the conversation about slavery in the U.S. and its aftermath does as well. I’m already looking forward to Voyages’ return. I'm just wondering what I’ll learn next.

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Photo of the Day: 2,139 miles

That's the distance between San Francisco and Atlanta. Or at least the number of Delta SkyMiles you'd earn on a one-way trip between the two cities.

Who knows? Maybe that's something Debbie Wagner (right) discussed with this prospective student from the San Francisco Bay Area, Thursday, February 17, prior to President Jim Wagner's address to northern California alumni that night.

The photo above was taken at the San Francisco Hyatt Regency, where the Wagners and other Emory emissaries met with high school students who are thinking about going to school back east. The Wheel wasn't necessarily a prop. But it sure looks good there, doesn't it?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Our house, your house

My mom likes to tell me stories of how, before I was born, she and my dad would frequently host “open houses.” They’d invite all their friends over one weekend afternoon, they could come and go as they pleased, sample the food and drinks (which my parents provided), wander from room to room and conversation to conversation, listen to the music (probably blasting from our wood-paneled, sofa-sized record player/stereo), and generally hang out with the purpose of escaping life’s drudgeries in the company of friends. It’s a fun story to hear and it tells me one thing about my parents.

They were a lot more fun before I came around.

But perhaps more important than my familial transitions, and definitely more relevant to you, is that open houses are a great time. Like the Miller-Ward open house the Emory Alumni Association (EAA) hosted on Saturday, February 19.

The open house was the first major public event announcing the Miller-Ward Alumni House’s availability as a center for weddings, receptions, business meetings, and other special events for members of the Emory community.

For more information about how to reserve Miller-Ward for your event or to schedule a tour, send an email to millerwardhouse@emory.edu or call 404.727.6400.

Like my parents’ open houses of years past, our friends (all of whom received a Miller-Ward gift/information bag for attending … if you’d like one of your own, email us ... again at millerwardhouse@emory.edu) roamed throughout, embracing the friendly atmosphere with every step. Our guests were diverse, too: prospective brides (and their parents) checking out the facility and how it would sparkle in photos; alumni scouting the roominess of our rooms—state-of-the-art yet elegant—mentally determining their functionality; and even a handful of students made their first trip to the house, which, upon graduation, will be their home away from home as Emory alumni.

The Will Scruggs Jazz Fellowship jammed throughout the two-hour event (no record player in sight), and a host of vendors kept glasses and plates full with a variety of tasty, nourishing samples, all of which are available to customers. They include: Affairs to Remember Catering, Atlanta Wholesale Wine, Big Boat Wine Company, Carole Parks Catering, Classic Party Rentals, Masterpiece Events, National Distributing Company, Nicole’s Events, and Peachtree Tents.

I staffed the registration table and did my share of wandering myself. I’ve worked at Miller-Ward for more than five years and am constantly amazed at how the facility transforms itself depending on what it needs to be. The house can go from elegant (fancy tablecloths and ornate flower arrangements have rarely looked better than at Miller-Ward) to businesslike literally in hours.

Sometimes, like on Saturday afternoon, it’s both. Governor’s Hall, the focal point of all the action, was the inviting, ornate-yet-comfortable centerpiece it always is, and our upstairs meeting rooms were both professional and stylish. Even our new upstairs bridal suite is a shining star. And I must admit that, yes, I stood in front of the bridal suite’s huge mirror more than once just to see if my shirt was tucked in right (one time, it wasn’t and the necessary adjustments were made).

All in all, it was a remarkably successful afternoon.

That evening, after I got home, I called my mom to update her on my weekend and I mentioned working the Miller-Ward open house.

“You know, your dad and I used to hold open houses all the time, I’ve told you that, right?” she said. It’s not that my mom has any memory issues, please don’t think that. She just likes family stories.

“You have,” I said. “But not for a while. What were they like?”

To see more photos from the event, visit our alumni photo page.

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Friday, February 18, 2011

Bob Dylan is no. 151

Yes, that is the legendary Bob Dylan at right. Performing at Glenn Auditorium. Here on Emory's campus.

The date was February 8, 1964.

He looks pretty good, actually. Or at least pretty young.

This year marks Emory's 175th anniversary, and as part of the celebration, the University has put together a webpage that lists the 175 of everything.

The most recent entry is 175 performers. It's a list of 175 singers, dancers, musicians, and actors who have appeared on campus over Emory's 175-year history. Dylan is listed as no. 151. Take a look at some of the others. There are a lot you'll recognize.

But we've had even more. As I mentioned in my first post about the 175, I've been at Emory for 11 years and I've seen a lot. In every sense of the term. Some of the artists who didn't make the 175 (but have performed here since I started work include Ben Folds, the Jennifer Nettles Band, Ludacris, Third Eye Blind, Better Than Ezra, Pat Green, and the Bang on a Can All Stars (which I just need to mention because of the name). Unfortunately, I'm not cultured enough to speak to the dancers and orchestral groups who've been here, although I'm betting we have readers who can.

I think my favorite of those listed above was the Jennifer Nettles Band (her group before Sugarland), who played an absolutely rockin' set outside the DUC on the McDonough Field side. It was a 90 minute show, I think. For free.

The performers aren't the only list. Other 175s currently posted include the first 175 faculty members appointed to Emory. The 175th, Robert Troutman, a professor in the School of Law, was appointed in 1915, meaning that Emory was around nearly 80 years before its 175th faculty member was hired. That's some serious job security.

Also listed are 175 species in Lullwater. We've got mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds of all sorts, and even a Spirit. My favorite of the 175 is the American crow.

More lists will be added soon. And keep an eye out for those Southeastern five-lined skinks next time you're exploring Lullwater. I hear they eat a lot.

-- Eric Rangus, director, communications, EAA

Monday, February 14, 2011

Photo of the Day: From our heart to yours

This is how EAA staff say Happy Valentine's Day to each other: with a lonely heart-shaped bowl of chocolate on the staff kitchen table. It was full this morning, so we can only imagine what it'll look like by the end of the day.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Photo of the Day: Thinking Pink

Today's Wonderful Wednesday featured a whole lot of pink. Besides Valentine's Day being less than a week away, Emory groups were supporting breast cancer awareness and research as part of the annual Think Pink week.

Student athletes and members from the Student Programming Council (SPC) sold pink scarves and bow ties to students to raise money for breast cancer research at the Winship Cancer Institute.

This all leads up to the Pink Tie Affair Saturday, February 12, for a sock-hop-themed night of food, music, and dancing. Scarves and bow ties will again be sold at the event.

Sunday, we'll be cheering on the women's basketball team during their annual Think Pink game at 2:00 p.m. at the WoodPec. The Eagles face the University of Chicago.

You can read more about the week's Think Pink events in the Emory Report.
Photo by Stephanie Chan 14C

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Smile! You're in the 100 Senior Honorary

See more photos from the 100 Senior Honorary induction and reception.

See individual photos of the 100 Senior Honorary inductees.

The aptly named 100 Senior Honorary inducted three-digits-worth of new members from the Class of 2011 on Wednesday, February 2. Following the induction ceremony at Glenn Auditorium, everyone adjourned to the Math and Science Center for a continuation of the celebration.

One of the EAA’s newest and most exciting traditions, the 100 Senior Honorary debuted in 2005. Many previous recipients have matured into alumni leaders, and one of the responsibilities asked of the 2011 class is that they continue this strong pipeline of leadership.

Members of the 100 Senior Honorary were selected based on their outstanding contributions to the Emory community, including academics, athletics, leadership, volunteering, and mentoring.

Each of the University’s undergraduate schools, Emory College of Arts and Sciences, Goizueta Business School, and the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing is represented, and several of the 100 for 2011 are Oxford College continuees.

The 100 Senior Honorary is selected by a committee consisting of staff members from campus life, residence life and housing, athletics, and undergraduate deans.

-- Eric Rangus, director of communications, EAA

Friday, February 4, 2011

Arrive with 12 strangers, leave with 12 friends

Starting Wednesday, February 9, Emory alumni across Atlanta will open their doors and set their tables for students and faculty as part of the Emory Alumni Association’s (EAA) seventh annual Dinner with 12 Strangers.

Over five consecutive days, alumni will host 38 dinners. Besides providing a great meal for free to students tired of Cox Hall or out of DUC swipes, the dinners are an excellent opportunity to meet new people, explore the city, and hear from both alumni and Emory faculty about their college and graduate experiences.

Hosts for the dinners reflect a wide range of interests and careers, including CDC employees, financial experts, nutritionists, stand-up comedians, attorneys, travelers, and antique collectors. Emory College Dean Robin Forman and his wife, Ann, are among the hosts. John Ford, senior vice president for campus life will also host a dinner with his wife, Hilary.

Some hosts like Joe O’Geen 10C, a current Residence Hall Director in Harris Hall, attended a Dinner with 12 Strangers last year and return as co-hosts for 2011. RHA members, OEO leaders, tour guides, Greek life representatives, photographers, cooks, and dancers reflect another small portion of the eclectic group of alumni hosting.

“The goal of the program is for students to realize how far the Emory network extends,” said Gloria Grevas, director of alumni programs for the EAA. “Seeing involved alumni not only helps students understand all the ways they can stay connected to Emory after they graduate, but helps them realize how large the Emory community is.” Grevas added, “These dinners help them to start exploring and utilizing it beginning with networking.”

A new addition to the Dinner with 12 Strangers program this year is a special student/alumni Shabbat dinner to be held at the Marcus Hillel Center on Friday, February 11. The Shabbat dinner will begin with a Kiddush service at 6:00 p.m., and dinner will follow at 7:00 p.m. Dessert will be served at 8:15 p.m. and tours of the center will be offered.

For specific information about the Shabbat dinner, contact Emory Hillel's Michael Rabkin at 404.963.2548 ext. 102 or at michael@emoryhillel.org.

Students can register and learn more about specific dinners on the Dinner with 12 Strangers website.

-- Liz Speyer 14C, student assistant, EAA

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Happy Birthday Emory!

It's easier to stop counting after you reach a certain age, 56, 75, 87...but when you reach 175, you've got to celebrate.

This year's Founders Day dinner (and its accompanying week of festivities) marked that milestone for Emory--its 175th birthday.

Administrators, faculty, students (including me), and friends gathered Monday night, January 31, for a fabulous dinner to celebrate good ol' Emory.

And it wouldn't be a celebration without the musical voices of Emory's all-male, a capella group, No Strings Attached. They entertained attendees with their versions of "Georgia on My Mind" and "Got To Get You Into My Life."

President Emeritus James T. Laney 94H delivered the keynote address, referencing Robert W. Woodruff 1912C and his endless contributions to Emory--and his ironic "aversion to praise and publicity. He told an anecdote about the first time he met Woodruff. The latter gave him a card with the following adage on it: "There is no limit to what a man can do or how far he can go if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit."

The following year when they met again, Woodruff gave him another card with the same inscription. The crowd laughed as Laney said he knew that must've meant something. I think Woodruff would've wanted us to remember what he said, not that he said it. If you love Emory as much as I do, you know that you don't need a title or a fancy position on campus and you don't need to be quoted in The Wheel. All you need to know is that whatever it is that you do for the good of the Emory community, no matter how many people notice, is enough.

You can hear the rest of President Laney's address here.

Now, although the birthday cake didn't have 175 candles, I bet there were more than 175 lit up during the closing ceremony. After President Jim Wagner's toast to Emory, all the guests lit our candles and sang the alma mater, led by No Strings Attached. After we "hailed the gold and blue," we all blew out the candles in proper birthday fashion.

To see photos from the night, visit the EAA's photo page.

Founders Week continues tonight with a lecture at Oxford College by Mark Auslander from Brandeis University. And Thursday marks the beginning of a landmark three-day conference on slavery's role on higher education sponsored by Emory's Transforming Community Project (TCP). You can find more information on upcoming Founders Week's events here.

And with that, I'd like to wish a happy birthday to Emory. Here's to another 175 years.

--Lindsey Bomnin 12C, EAA communications intern