Wells College News Archives 2009

Stories from the College's news archives.


Wells Community Builds Peace, One Penny at a Time

Benefit Raises Funds for Schools in Remote Pakistan, Afghanistan

In remote villages of Pakistan and Afghanistan villages from which terrorist organizations recruit the impoverished, illiterate and uneducated. A penny can buy a pencil and transform a childs life through learning. Here in the United States, that same penny can teach American students valuable lessons in philanthropic action. Linking these disparate realties is Pennies for Peace, a program of the Central Asia Institute (CAI), the nonprofit organization started by Greg Mortenson, author of the New York Times best seller Three Cups of Tea.

At Wells College, Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology Christine Iacobucci recognized the projects natural affinity with Wells educational mission and emphasis on experiential learning. Additionally, CAI and Pennies for Peace emphasize opportunities for women and girls, a goal that aligns with the values Wells holds from its former days as a womens college. Iacobucci began a campus effort of Pennies for Peace earlier this fall. With a growing cadre of student and staff volunteers, she has helped educate the Wells community about the conditions in Central Asia, and students' own capacity to have a positive impact in the global community.

This Friday, December 11th, the Pennies for Peace program is expanding into the wider Aurora community through a benefit concert with The Bottom Feeders. The popular bluegrass band, which features members of Wells faculty and staff, will play at the Fargo Bar and Grill in downtown Aurora at 9 p.m. With the annual Christmas in Aurora event in full swing, the Bottom Feeders and Pennies for Peace will collect fundsof any denominationto help buy school supplies, health supplies, or economic tools like sewing machines for the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The benefit is without cover charge, but organizers hope those who come to enjoy the festivities will consider donating to the cause in lieu of a door charge.

The event precedes Mortensons own visit to Auburn, which takes place in March. Information about Mortensons visit can be found at www.auburnedfoundation.org.

More information on the Central Asia Institute and the Pennies for Peace program can be found at https://www.ikat.org/pennies-for-peace/.

Individuals interested in donating to the program through Wells College can contact Professor Christine Iacobucci at ciacobucci@wells.edu.


Premiere Exhibition by Area Artists

Contemporary painters Brett Scheifflee and Lana Purnell show twenty-eight paintings at the String Room Gallery at Wells College

Affinity: October 21 December 2, 2009Aurora, NY The Wells College Visual Arts Department is pleased to announce the second exhibition of the 2009-2010 academic year, Affinity an exhibition of paintings by Brett Scheifflee and Lana Purnell. The show will be on display in Wells String Room Gallery (SRG) from October 21 through December 2. An opening reception, open to the public, will held from 6:00-8:00 on October 21.

Affinity is an exhibition of twenty-eight oil paintings by Brett Scheifflee and Lana Purnell. Their work focuses on consumer objects and they reinterpret the pop strategies of another generation by using intensive, gorgeously crafted layers of glazed oil to reveal singular consumer objects on often colorful fields. Their works seem, at the same time, to be cool and distanced yet hand-wrought in an academic, humanist tradition. String Room Gallery director William Ganis says, We may think we know this kind of work because of earlier artists such as Sigmar Polke and Andy Warhol, but Scheifflee and Purnell bring an unexpected quality as they insert traditional techniques into a style that usually breaks painting conventions. As such, their work bridges the stylistic space between Dutch still-lifes and pop icons. 

Brett Scheifflee and Lana Purnell have worked collaboratively since 2008. Born in Buffalo, NY, in 1986, Brett Scheifflee studied illustration and art history at the Rochester Institute of Technology where he recieved a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2008. He has extensively studided the history and practices of oil painting and has subsequently devoted himself to fine arts. Brett is currently invloved with producing and showing independent and collaborative works, as well as painting and designing on commission.

Lana was born in Aurora, NY in 1986. She graduated from the Rochester Institute of Technology with a BFA in 2008. She is enthusiastic about her diverse spectrum of influences and interests--from postmodern philosophy in art to graphic novels to techniques in classical painting.

Their work was recently exhibited as a part of the Made in NY 2009 exhibition at the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center in Auburn. 

The String Room Gallery is a center for the exhibition of contemporary art in the Finger Lakes of New York. It is located on the Wells College campus in the southwest corner on the first floor of the Main Building. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 12 5 pm; and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 4 pm. For more information about the show at Wells, please see the gallerys website or contact Professor Ganis at 315.364.3465.


Film Illustrates the Challenge of Fledgling Democracies

For Asylum-Seekers from the Georgian Republic, the Personal and the Political Meet

Irakli Kakabadze

By the fall of 2007, Irakli Kakabadze and Anna Dolidze had begun a new life in America with their infant son. Kakabadze, a renowned political activist, and Dolidze, a human rights lawyer, fled the Georgian Republic the previous December when, due to their outspoken criticism of the government, they faced repeated attacks and arrests.

Yet in November of that year, their new life was unsettled by news of mass protests in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi. Those protests proceeded peacefully for five days before Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili violently dispersed demonstrators and seized control of the media. When President Saakashvili announced that new elections would be held in an effort to appease international powers, the couple decided to return to their homeland. Kakabadze and Dolidze were determined to help their fellow citizens defend the democratic freedoms first gained in the peaceful Rose Revolution of 2003which, ironically, both Kakabadze and Saakashvili had helped to lead.

The documentary film At the Top of My Voice chronicles Kakabadze and Dolidze as they attempt to balance safety for their family, and democracy for their country, in the weeks preceding the election. The film is an intimate portrait of those who struggle for freedom and democracy, as well as the increasingly transnational and transcontinental nature of political activism in the 21st century.

Kakabadze is currently the writer-in-residence of Ithaca City of Asylum, an organization dedicated to providing sanctuary to writers whose works are suppressed or whose lives are threatened. Wells College partners with ICOA as part of its ongoing commitment to internationalism and to social concerns.

The film will be screened at Wells College at 4:45 on September 23rd, in room 209 of Stratton Hall. Kakabadze and Dolidze will introduce the film, and will answer questions afterwards.

More about Kakabadze can be found at the Ithaca City of Asylum web site. More about the film can be found at the film's site.


Wells College to Host Peachtown Native American Festival

Family-Friendly Event Celebrates Haudenosaunee Culture

Peachtown 2009On Saturday, September 19th, the Peachtown Festival will return to the Wells College campus. The Festival, which celebrates Cayuga and Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) culture, features Native vendors, food, musicians, artists, dancers and a storyteller. This year, the Festival will be followed by a community picnic and social dance at the Cayuga/SHARE farm.

When the first Peachtown Festival was held in 1998, it was the first celebration of Native American culture in over 200 years. In May 1779, George Washington ordered Major General John Sullivan to effect the total destruction and devastation of Native American villages in the area. Cayuga crops and homes in the area of Aurora, Union Springs, and Cayuga were razed in September of that yearincluding a peach orchard of 1500 trees at Chonodote, where Aurora is today. The festival draws its name from those legendary orchards.

The Peachtown Festival is important because offers us the chance to strengthen our bonds of community with the Cayuga, Haudenosaunee, and kindred peoples, said Wells professor of anthropology and religion Ernie Olson. Additionally, said Olson, the Festivals themes of displacement and cultural erosion on the one hand, and preservation and tolerance on the other, offer lessons with wide applications.

The Peachtown Festival begins at 10:30am on the front lawn of Main Building, with music, dancing and storytelling commencing at 11am. The Festival continues on campus until 5pm, when Wells College vans will provide transportation to the nearby Cayuga/SHARE farm.

The Festival, which is free, is co-sponsored by Wells College, the Cayuga/SHARE farm, Cornell University American Indian Program, and Ithaca College.


Sun and Music to Grace the SRC

Award-winning contemporary artists construct sculptural installation in the String Room Gallery at Wells College


The Wells College Visual Arts Department is pleased to announce the premiere exhibition of the 2009-2010 academic year, Sun in an Empty Room + Music of Chance, a site-specific instillation by Vancouver-based artists Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky. The exhibition will be on display in Wells String Room Gallery (SRG) from September 2 through October 14. An opening reception, open to the public, will held from 6:00-8:00 on September 2. You can find more information about the installation by visiting the SRG website.

Sun in an Empty Room is made largely of paper mâché that imitates a stone- and bottle-strewn landscape. According to SRG director and assistant professor of art history William Ganis, the artists use of newspaper and dollar-store items is ordered and gorgeous, unlike our usual association with such every-day items. In Music of Chance, the artists use aluminum foil to create continuous strand of hand-embossed objectslike an enormous charm bracelet. Because the gallery is a light-filled, lake view room, Ganis says he looks forward to seeing how the artists will use the ever-changing natural light.

Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky have worked collaboratively since 2004.  Born in Winnipeg and Calgary, respectively, both artists have MFA degrees from the University of British Columbia, where they met in 1996. The duos installations, sculptures and photographs have been exhibited internationally. This years exhibits have included Auto. Sueno y Materia at LABoral (Gijon, Spain) and Dos de Mayo (Madrid), Blue Like an Orange (Ottawa Art Gallery), How Soon is Now (Vancouver Art Gallery) and a solo exhibit at Fonderie Darling (Montréal).  Other exhibits include: National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa), Tokyo Wonder Site (Tokyo), Organism (Portland), loop-raum (Berlin), Pari Nadimi Gallery (Toronto), Mount Saint Vincent University (Halifax) and the Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver).  Wepplers work has also been exhibited at the Palazzo delle Papesse (Siena), and COCA (Seattle).  Mahovskys work has been shown at the Queens Museum of Art (New York), and he has written for journals including Artforum and Canadian Art.  Their work is represented in public collections including the Musee dart Contemporain de Montreal and the National Gallery of Canada. They are semi-finalists for this years prestigious Sobey Award, the premier award for young artists in Canada.

This exhibition was made possible by a generous grant from the Canada Council for the Arts, an organization that supports, promotes and celebrates the work of Canadian artists and arts organizations.


Rock Critic Evelyn McDonnell to Speak at Wells

Evelyn McDonnellWells College is proud to announce Evelyn McDonnell, Annenberg Fellow and rock critic, as the inaugural speaker for its 2009-10 Arts & Lecture series. McDonnell will give a talk entitled, "Mom and Pop: Real Life Adventures of a Female Rock Critic " on Friday, September 11, 2009 at 7:30 p.m in Phipps Auditorium. This event is open to the Wells community and the public.

Evelyn McDonnell has been writing about popular culture and society for more than 20 years. Her work has appeared in Ms., Rolling Stone, The New York Times, Spin, and Vibe, as well as numerous other publications and anthologies. In her talk Mom and Pop: Real Life Adventures of a Female Rock Critic, McDonnell reflects on her life and the cultural landmarks she has witnessed, accompanied by some of the songs that have driven her journey.

McDonnells journalism career has taken her from Iceland to New Zealand, from Riot Grrrl to alt-momhood. She is the author of three books: Mamarama: A Memoir of Sex, Kids and Rock n Roll; Army of She: Icelandic, Iconoclastic, Irrepressible Bjork; and Rent by Jonathan Larson. She also coedited the anthologies Rock She Wrote: Women Write About Rock, Pop and Rap and Stars Dont Stand Still in the Sky: Music and Myth. McDonnell has been the editorial director of www.MOLI.com, pop culture writer at The Miami Herald, senior editor at The Village Voice, and associate editor at SF Weekly. She has won several fellowships and awards, including an Annenberg Fellowship at the University of Southern California (USC), a fellowship to the National Endowment for the Arts Arts Journalism Institute in Theater and Musical Theater, and first place for enterprise by the South Florida Black Journalists Association and second place in the Society of Professional Journalists Sunshine State Awards for her 2004 Herald expose of hip-hop cops. She is currently working on a Masters in Arts Journalism at USC.

General Admission is $10; Wells students: FREE; Other students, Wells community: $5. For more information, please contact Rebecca Cooper, Programming and Events Coordinator 315-364-3330.

September, 2009


Who’s Who Among American College Students

The following 31 Wells College students been selected for Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges. Each year, Who’s Who bestows this honor on outstanding campus leaders for their scholastic and community achievements. Wells College joins more than 2,300 institutions nationwide in nominating students to Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges, which rewards and recognizes individual academic excellence on a national level. With the support of prominent educational institutions in all sections of the country, this program is today a true reflection of the caliber of the American college student.

June, 2009


Wells College Announces 2009 Commencement Speaker

President Emerita of Ithaca College to address Wells graduates on May 23

Peggy WillilamsWells College President Lisa Marsh Ryerson has announced that Dr. Peggy Ryan Williams, recently retired president emerita of Ithaca College, will be Wells’ 2009 commencement speaker.  This year’s ceremony will take place at the Aurora Inn on Saturday, May 23.

Dr. Peggy R. Williams served as the first woman and seventh president of Ithaca College for eleven years (1997-2008). Previously, she was president of Lyndon State College in Lyndonville, Vt. As president of Ithaca College, her key accomplishments included developing a campus master plan that included construction of one of the first 100 buildings in the world to achieve platinum LEED certification; leading the largest fundraising campaign in the college’s history; increasing and stabilizing their enrollment while improving the academic profile of the student body; and adding new academic programs, including IC’s first doctoral program. 

“Peggy Williams is a higher education leader who really understands the liberal arts, and as a long-time friend and neighbor, she has a special understanding of and affection for Wells,” said President Ryerson. “It is my great pleasure to welcome my colleague Peggy Williams as our 2009 commencement speaker.”

Active in her communities, Dr. Williams was a member of the NCAA Division III Presidents Council and its subcommittee on Gender and Diversity Issues; served on the boards of the Canada-U.S. Foundation for Educational Exchange (Fulbright) and the American Council on Education, where she chaired the Commission on Women; and currently serves on the boards of St. Michael's College (Vt.) and the Tompkins Trust Company. In February, Williams received the American Council on Education’s Donna Shavlik Award, given annually to an individual whose leadership has demonstrated a sustained and continuing commitment to the advancement of women. A dedicated athlete, she regularly participates in Women Swimmin', a swim across Cayuga Lake to benefit Hospicare and Palliative Care Services, and the AIDS Ride for Life.

Upon the conclusion of Dr. Williams’ presidency at Ithaca College, their board of trustees endowed a new discussion symposium in her honor. The Peggy R. Williams Difficult Dialogues Symposium is designed to “explore intellectual diversity and academic freedom through discussions by prominent global leaders who will present on important, far-reaching topics.” In addition, Ithaca’s new administration building has been named for her – the Peggy Ryan Williams Center – and the Peggy R. Williams Award for Academic and Community Leadership is given annually to students who show achievement in both academic and nonacademic areas. 

Williams holds a bachelor of arts degree in psychology from St. Michael's College of the University of Toronto; a master of education degree from the University of Vermont; and a doctorate in administration, planning, and social policy from Harvard.

Wells College expects to confer degrees on more than 100 students this spring. Weather permitting, Commencement ceremonies will take place at 10:00 am at the Aurora Inn, Main Street, on Saturday, May 23. Guests are asked to park on campus in the Woods Lot; vans will make free runs to the Inn starting at 9:00 am. Rain location is Phipps Auditorium; seating will be for graduates and their ticketed guests only. The morning’s schedule is below:

  • 7:30 – 9:00 am  Stagecoach rides for seniors and their families in front of Main Bldg

  • 9:00 am  Shuttles begin from Woods Lot to Inn

  • 10:00 am   Commencement ceremony

  • 11:30 – 1:00 pm Light brunch will be served in the College’s dining hall; cost is $8.25 per person

May, 2009


Wells College Presents Annual Senior Art Exhibit

Five graduates display paintings, sculpture, and book arts as part of senior thesis project

Wells College senior art majors 2009The Wells College Art Department is pleased to present the annual spring senior thesis exhibit featuring paintings, sculpture, and book arts by five Class of 2009 graduates. The show opens Monday, May 11 in the String Room Gallery, Main Building, and will run through May 25. The public is cordially invited to view the free exhibit. An opening reception on May 11 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. will offer an opportunity to meet the student artists and a chance to discuss their work; light refreshments will be served. 

Katherine Arcate, a native of Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., is the first Wells College student to graduate with an Art of the Book major. Katherine, daughter of Jack and Tina Arcate, helped design her own individualized major, which combines aspects from the College’s existing Visual Arts major and the Book Arts minor. Book Arts is the study of calligraphy, binding and printmaking. However, the Visual Arts facet of the Art of the Book major is important, Katherine says, because a foundation in painting and drawing is important to all art majors. “The visual arts fundamentals have helped me work out and conceive my ideas,” she said.

Katherine’s thesis is a rendition of an eighteenth century version of “Little Red Riding Hood.” Creating the book required carving linoleum for printing, shaping puppet cut-outs, and binding several copies of the book. The book invites the viewer to participate in the storytelling by using puppets to act out scenes. Katherine believes people should play with books no matter their age and hopes to encourage physical connections between art and viewer through play. 

Alexandra Beck of Carthage, N.Y. holds a concentration in studio art and a minor in Environmental Studies. Alexandra’s senior thesis is themed around a series of stylized European landscape paintings that incorporate text over the images. Alexandra’s oil paintings depict various landscapes and seascapes that reflect her interpretation of her experience abroad.

Having studied abroad in Bath, England, during the spring of 2008, Alexandra hopes to continue a master’s degree abroad, pursuing landscape architecture. 

Marina Loew of Dryden, N.Y. is a visual arts major with a concentration in studio art. Inspired by a semester abroad in Florence, Italy, Marina’s thesis focuses on bird flock formation, socialization, and interaction within space. Using different types of wire and a pair of pliers, she has created a 3D menagerie of birds, from crows and parrots to a life-sized ostrich. Her work is reminiscent of the wire sculpture of artist Alexander Calder; it mimics the sketch-like quality of his creations, while at the same time portraying her own unique style. Many of Marina’s pieces hang in space, giving visitors the ability to walk underneath the birds and admire them above, frozen in mid-flight. 

After graduation Marina plans on working in Washington, D.C., after which she will continue her passion for art by going to graduate school in an as-yet-to-be-determined location in the British Isles. 

Robert LoMascolo of Union Springs, N.Y. is a visual arts major and book arts minor. His thesis was principally inspired by a trip that he took to Spain while at Wells. During his visit to Valencia, he was deeply moved by the architecture of Santiago Calatrava. Having always had an interest and fascination with architecture, Calatrava's modern, white, sculptural edifices inspired Rob to emulate the essence of the architectural forms in his own work.

"I wanted to create a sense of dynamic rhythm and movement using cohesive elements, simplistic in form and color, which would capture negative space and show the interplay of light and shadow," he said.

Rob enjoys working in ceramics because of the plasticity of the medium, allowing structures that are not otherwise achievable. The sculptures, though often heavy and complex in execution, produce a dramatic and seemingly gravity defiant effect. After graduating from Wells, Rob hopes to pursue his M.F.A. at the University of Alabama.

Jessica Stanton of Union Springs, N.Y. is a visual art major with a concentration in studio art. Jessica has loved art for as long as she can remember, and her time spent at Wells has only increased that love. Wells has allowed her to explore many different styles and techniques, which enabled her to find her own voice in the art world. Texture and particularly color have always interested her and that is what she has decided to focus her senior thesis on. Using geometric design, Jessica explores how color and texture work with and against each other. Jessica plans on continuing her painting while taking time off, before looking at graduate schools. 

Senior theses are the culminating requirement of study at Wells College. Art seniors are expected to plan and implement the entire exhibit, including the creation of the artwork to be shown, hanging the pieces and preparing the gallery, coordinating the reception, and promoting the show. Art professors William Roberts and Ted Lossowski guide the students’ work in the studios and oversee the installation of the show. 

The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Wednesday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information about the senior art show, please contact Professor Lossowski at 315/364-3344 and go to www.wells.edu/stringroomgallery/

May, 2009


Wells College Announces 2009 Alumnae Award Recipient

Wells woman honored for her distinctive contributions in the field of virology

Dorothea Smith Sawicki '66Carrie Bolton, president of the Wells College Alumnae Association, has announced the College’s 2009 Alumnae Award recipient. Dr. Dorothea “Thea” Smith Sawicki, Class of 1966, of Toledo, Ohio will be recognized on Saturday, May 30 during Wells’ annual Reunion Weekend. 

The Wells College Alumnae Award honors Wells women of high achievement in professions and careers, in volunteer and community work, in service to their alma mater, or in some combination of these endeavors. 

After graduating from Wells in 1966 with her degree in biology, Dr. Dorothea Sawicki earned a Ph.D. in microbiology from Columbia University and conducted post-doctoral work at the Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research from 1972-1977. For over thirty years, she has taught at the University of Toledo College of Medicine, formerly the Medical College of Ohio, where she held the positions of assistant professor; associate professor; professor; director of the molecular and cellular biology training program; and currently, professor and director of the infection, immunity and transplantation track.

Dr. Sawicki is recognized as an international authority on the replication of alphaviruses. Her research has focused on the mechanisms used by alphaviruses and related groups of animal and plant RNA viruses to control the synthesis of their viral RNA genome. Alphaviruses are spread by mosquito bites and cause disease mainly when they attack the brain, but can also produce severe joint pain. By looking at how viral RNA synthesis is controlled in infected cells, her studies could potentially lead to the development of new anti-viral agents that target viral RNA synthesis. She also collaborates on the study of coronaviruses with her husband, Dr. Stanley Sawicki, also a professor at the University of Toledo. Coronaviruses cause such diseases as the common cold and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in humans. 

According to Dr. Peter Palese, professor of medicine and infectious diseases and chair of microbiology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, “Dr. Sawicki is one of the most prominent RNA virologists in the country and she has been at the forefront of this field for several decades.” Dr. Stuart Siddell of the University of Bristol (England) concurs, stating that Dr. Sawicki is “acknowledged as a world authority in her specialist research area.” 

In addition to her work as a teacher, advisor, and researcher, Dr. Sawicki sits on the scientific advisory committees for the National Institute for Allergy & Infectious Diseases, the National Institutes of Health, and the USDA. She serves the virology community as secretary-treasurer of the American Society of Virology (ASV), and has also served on the editorial boards of a number of scientific journals, spoken at national and international conferences, and published more than 40 articles. 

Dr. Sawicki’s dedication and hard work are substantiated by many of the awards she has won from her colleagues and students. She has been the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence, the University of Toledo’s Women’s Commission Award, and the Dean’s Award for Mentoring. She has also been an American Red Cross Scientific Council honoree, chair of Division T for the American Society for Microbiology, and chair of the program committee for the ASV.

The Wells College Alumnae Award was established in 1968 as part of the Wells Centennial Celebration, and is presented by the President of the College at a convocation ceremony held during Reunion Weekend each spring. 

For additional information about Dorothea Smith Sawicki and the annual Alumnae Award at Wells College, please contact Director of Publications & Media Relations Kelly Buck at 315/364-3260.

May, 2009


Swine Flu Alert

Dean of Students Anne Lundquist shares the following information with Wells students, faculty and staff 

On Saturday, April 25, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Health Alert for Swine Flu.

The attached document summarizes the CDC information on the characteristics, symptoms, precautions and treatments relative to the Swine Flu. You may also get more information at www.cdc.gov. We have reviewed the Wells College campus-wide Critical Incident Response Plan and have an action plan in place to respond to a health-related emergency and notify the community.

If you are concerned about your risk or have symptoms associated with the Swine Flu, please contact your physician, the Medical Center (315.364.3273), the Cayuga County Health Department Swine Flu Hotline (315.253.1157) or the New York State Department of Health (1-800-808-1987).

April, 2009


Spring Choir Concert at Wells College

Annual spring performance – “Music for Springtime”

Wells College ChoirThe Wells College choral ensembles, conducted by Professor of Music Crawford Thoburn and accompanied by Russell Posegate, will present “Music for Springtime” on Sunday afternoon, May 3. The concert will begin at 4:00 pm in Barler Recital Hall. Admission is free, and the public is cordially invited to attend.

The program will feature a wide variety of great choral literature from the 16th century to the present, sung by the three College ensembles. The Women's and Men's Ensembles will each present selections from their own repertoires, and the two groups will combine to perform works for mixed voices.

The women will sing music by Benedetto Marcello, Felix Mendelssohn, Eugene Butler and Matyas Seiber, while the men will perform works by Heinrich Schuetz, Mendelssohn and Richard Rodgers. The mixed voice Concert Choir will sing music by Ludovico Viadana, Tomas Luis de Victoria, Heinrich Schuetz, Orlando di Lasso, John Bennet, Piotyr Ivanov, Elizabeth Poston, and George Frederick Handel, as well as an Afro-American spiritual arranged by William Dawson and a Czech folksong arranged by Morten J. Luvaas.

For more information about the spring concert and musical offerings at Wells, please contact Professor Thoburn at 315/364-3347

April, 2009


Wells College Presents a Play on Women & War

“Valiant” examines war from the perspective of affected women

ValiantThe Wells College Arts & Lecture Series welcomes playwright Lanna Joffrey and “Valiant” to campus on Saturday evening, May 2. The play will be presented in Phipps Auditorium, Macmillan Hall, at 7:30 pm. Prices are $10 for the general public; $5 for students, seniors, children, and the Wells College community; and free for Wells students with ID. Tickets are available at the door the night of the show or from the box office the preceding week; call 315/364-3456 to reserve seats. 

Adapted by Lanna Joffrey from Sally Hayton-Keeva’s book Valiant Women in War and Exile, the play “Valiant” is a documentary theatre piece based on interviews with women from Japan, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland, Russia, the United States, Armenia, Hungary, El Salvador, and the Philippines. Whether victim, soldier, or peacemaker, these women have fought, struggled, and survived. “Valiant” explores the causes and consequences of war, and asks the question: “Can we redeem ourselves?” 

Assistant Professor of Theatre Siouxsie Grady was instrumental in bringing “Valiant” to campus. “This strong group of artists is sure to bring an insightful evening of theatre to Wells College,” she said. “The impact of this powerful drama is especially timely and I expect it will speak many in the audience.”

The cast, Tami Dixon, Lanna Joffrey, and Sharahn LaRue, received a nomination for a 2006 New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Ensemble; Joffrey earned a 2004 New York International Fringe Festival Overall Excellence in Performance Award. 

Each year, the Wells College Arts & Lecture Series brings professional artists to campus to perform, to speak on relevant issues, and to represent the disciplines of theatre, music, and dance. Groups and individuals are selected annually by a committee composed of Wells faculty, staff and students.

For more information about “Valiant” and the Wells Arts & Lecture Series, please contact Rebecca Cooper, Series Coordinator, at 315/364-3330. More information about “Valiant” may be found at www.valiant.tamilla.com/.

April, 2009


Wells College, Southern Cayuga Schools Strengthen Partnership

Collaborative approach benefits district and college

Wells College and the Southern Cayuga Central School District have enjoyed a special relationship for years. To strengthen this long-standing relationship, the two schools established in 2006 a formal partnership to enrich academic opportunity across disciplines, encourage greater communication between the schools, and share important resources and facilities.

The Wells/SCCS Partnership has developed a Statement of Purpose which states in part that the two schools are “committed to developing an open, collaborative relationship that supports the development of both institutions and the individuals who work and learn within them. Our goals are to develop opportunities for personal and professional growth, reciprocal support, shared resources, and joint community service. We believe that if we pool our assets, we can enhance the education of our students and the lives of all within our communities.”

Comprised of representatives from Southern Cayuga high school and middle school, Emily Howland elementary school, and Wells College, the Partnership is jointly led by Wells College President Lisa Marsh Ryerson and SCCS Superintendent Mary Kay Worth. The committee meets quarterly over the 10-month academic year.

According to Mary Kay Worth, “This committee expresses the power of a true partnership and has steadily grown in enthusiasm and commitment over the past three years. We keep finding new ways to benefit our student populations, our community, and our faculty and staff. Our collaboration on behalf of education in our community remains strong.”

The Wells/SCCS partnership has recently clarified its goals in an action plan that will guide its work in the future. Some of the accomplishments already realized include sharing resources such as facilities, athletics and academic spaces, conference rooms, theatres, libraries and more. The Wells College String Room Gallery hosted an art exhibition by SCCS students in January, and faculty from Wells collaborated with SCCS in the use of the Floating Classroom. SCCS faculty and staff enjoy discounts at Wells’ fitness center and free use of materials at the College library. One of the most successful ventures has been the after school foreign language program, where Wells College students work with middle and elementary school students on foreign language and cross cultural skills. 

“This partnership with our neighbors at Southern Cayuga brings our collective strengths to the table,” said Wells President Lisa Marsh Ryerson. “It creates opportunities that directly support the intellectual and physical development of the students in both institutions, and it has been a delight to work with my colleagues in the local school district.” 

Future plans under discussion include further development of resource sharing, creation of a logo to promote the partnership, and other shared teaching and learning opportunities. 

For more information about the Wells/Southern Cayuga Partnership, please contact the Wells College President’s Office at 315/364-3265 or the Southern Cayuga School District Office at 315/364-7211. Learn more about both schools online at www.wells.edu and www.southerncayuga.org.

SCCS is at the heart of southern Cayuga County. The Southern Cayuga Central School District supports a full pre-K–12 program offering two full-day preschool programs and many college course offerings to its high school students. Technology resources are evident throughout the school. Agriculture and FFA are strong suits while athletics, music, art and drama thrive, allowing students to pursue individual strengths and interest during and after school.  The campus boasts a pool, planetarium, observatory, and greenhouse used by students and community members alike. 

Wells College is a nationally recognized private coeducational liberal arts college located in Aurora, New York, on the eastern shore of Cayuga Lake. It was established in 1868 by Henry Wells, founder of the Wells Fargo and American Express Companies. The College is known as an exceptional value, pairing top quality academic programs with affordable tuition. Wells boasts small class sizes, an extensive experiential learning program, and a wide range of off-campus study options. The academic program allows students substantial freedom to create individually unique educational experiences. Small, smart, and connected to the world around it, Wells is currently strengthening its off-campus study offerings and introducing new athletics programs.

April, 2009


Wells College Celebrates Earth Day

Scientist Emeritus from the Boyce Thompson Institute gives lecture on responsible resource use

Dr. Carol LeopoldDr. A. Carl Leopold of the Boyce Thompson Institute at Cornell University will give a lecture at Wells College in celebration of Earth Day. The free talk, “‘The Land Ethic’ and the Aldo Leopold Legacy,” will take place on Wednesday, April 22 at 4:30 pm in Stratton Hall 209. All are invited to attend. 

Carl Leopold is the William H. Crocker Scientist Emeritus at the Boyce Thompson Institute, a private plant research institute affiliated with Cornell University; he joined the Institute in 1977. Dr. Leopold has earned international recognition in the fields of plant development and physiology, including groundbreaking work on the drought tolerance of seeds. He has served as an officer or on the governing boards of a number of scholarly societies, and he is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is a founding member of the Finger Lakes Land Trust; Greensprings, an organization promoting earth-friendly burial; and the Tropical Forestry Initiative in Costa Rica, which is engaged in returning land formerly cleared for agriculture to tropical forest.

Dr. Leopold is the son of Aldo Leopold (1887-1948), known as “the father of wildlife ecology” and author of A Sand County Almanac. In “The Land Ethic,” a chapter of the Almanac, Aldo Leopold delves into land conservation and the state of harmony between man and the land, and details what has come to be called the “ecological-evolutionary” approach to managing natural resources. Dr. Carl Leopold’s lecture will focus on the theories and practices of these well-known works.

The annual Earth Day lecture is a small part of Wells’ ongoing environmental efforts to reduce the College’s carbon footprint. In October, Wells President Lisa Marsh Ryerson signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment in October, joining an ever-growing national movement in which institutions of higher learning pledge to set a positive example in the fields of environmental ethics and sustainability.

For more information about Dr. Leopold’s Earth Day lecture at Wells College, please contact Professor Thomas Vawter at 315/364-3269.

April, 2009


Wells Presents Experimental Performance Piece

“Frames” explores stereotypes by focusing audience attention

It is said “dancing is about the feet;” “acting is all in the eyes;” “Italians talk with their hands.” During the Wells Performing Arts Department’s presentation of Frames, these stereotypes and perceptions are explored. Frames will be presented at 7:00 pm on Friday, April 24, in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall; the show is free and the public is welcome. 

Frames is an experimental dance piece that takes a look at stereotypes and perceptions related to culture, dance, and performance  by focusing attention on only one part of the body, hiding the rest of the actor.  Students will be acting out monologues and scenes from plays ranging from Shakespeare to Rumors to modern dance, all hidden behind walls and screens except for the highlighted part of the body.  Lecturer in Performing Arts Roberta Kolpakas will oversee the student designers for Frames; Assistant Professor of Theatre Siouxsie Grady will supervise the directorial and acting students.

“We like to provide an opportunity for our students to act and design in a non-traditional setting,” says Ms. Kolpakas about Wells’ recent experimental performance exhibitions. “It provides the Performing Arts faculty with a chance to explore different topics and share our explorations with the faculty, staff, students, and the community in a creative manner.  For example, with Frames, we are exploring human communication – how much our body language is a part of how we speak to each other. I’m excited to see the performance to find out how well we can understand the monologues without many physical or visual cues.”

For more information about Frames and other theatrical productions at Wells, please contact Ms. Kolpakas or Professor Grady at 315/364-3232.
April, 2009


Spring Weekend Celebration at Wells College

“Coney Island” festivities include carnival games, live music, fireworks

The Wells College Programming Board is pleased to announce Spring Weekend 2009: Coney Island. On Saturday, April 25, Coney Island will take place on the Wells College campus on Route 90 (Main Street) in the village of Aurora. Admission is $5 general admission; $2 for seniors, children, and non-Wells students. Coney Island is free for Wells students and employees.

Gates open at 11:00 am and the fun runs until 3:00 pm on the front lawn of Main Building (inside the Sommer Center in case of inclement weather). Special novelty activities include a bounce house, carnival games, a photo booth, henna artist, and a beer tasting (for those of age). The public is invited to bring a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy vendor booths, dancing, craft tables, and more. Beer, soft drinks, and food will be available for purchase. No recording devices, coolers or outside food or beverages permitted. 

Beginning at 7:00 pm, fans are invited back for live music presented by three bands. The concert features tunes by indie band Control Escape and classic rocker Dan Wolf, followed by headliners Big Eyed Phish, a Dave Matthews tribute band. A brilliant fireworks display over Cayuga Lake will cap off the festivities at 10:00 pm. Concert admission is included in the Spring Weekend entry fee.

Coney Island will be held rain or shine. For more information, please contact Becca Cooper, programming coordinator, at 315/364-3330.

April, 2009


Wells College Hosts Poetry Reading

Christina Pugh returns to read from her new book Restoration

Christina PughThe Wells College Visiting Writer Series is pleased to welcome poet and author Christina Pugh back to campus for a reading on Wednesday, April 15. Ms. Pugh’s presentation will take place at 7:30 pm in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall; she will read from her latest book of poetry Restoration. The free event will be followed by a reception with an opportunity to meet the writer; light refreshments will be served. 

Christina Pugh is the author of two books of poetry: Restoration (Northwestern University Press / TriQuarterly Books, 2008) and Rotary (Word Press, 2004), which received the Word Press First Book Prize. She has also published a chapbook, Gardening at Dusk (Wells College Press, 2002). She is currently completing two book projects: Grains of the Voice, a collection of poems which takes the sonnet’s volta as a formal principle guiding the construction of contemplative free verse, and a book of literary criticism on ekphrasis (poems about art) in twentieth-century American poetry. 

Pugh received the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America in 2008, a fellowship in poetry from the Illinois Arts Council in 2007, and a faculty fellowship from the Institute for the Humanities at the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2007-2008. She has also been awarded the Grolier Poetry Prize, the Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowship from Poetry magazine, the Intro Journals Award from the Associated Writing Programs, a Whiting Fellowship for the Humanities, and residencies at the Ragdale and Ucross colonies. Her poetry has appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, TriQuarterly, Ploughshares, and other publications, and has been anthologized in Poetry 180 (Random House, 2003).

In addition to her own poems, Pugh has published numerous articles on poetry and poetics. Her criticism has appeared most recently in Poetry, Verse, The Emily Dickinson Journal, and in Originality, Imitation, Plagiarism (University of Michigan Press, 2008). She is an assistant professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago. 

Ms. Pugh will also give a poetry workshop and meet with writing classes during her time on the Wells campus.

As part of the Wells College Visiting Writer Series, poets and writers are invited to campus throughout the academic year to meet with students, present writing workshops, and read from their respective works. 

For more information about this and other readings at Wells, please contact Professor Bruce Bennett at 315.364.3228.

April, 2009


Wells College Hosts Director of the Democracy Imperative

Nancy Thomas to speak on democracy and higher education

On Thursday, April 16, Nancy Thomas, director of the University of New Hampshire’s The Democracy Imperative, will visit the Wells College campus to give a presentation entitled “Deliberative Democracy and Higher Education.“ Her talk will take place at 12:30 pm in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. The event is free and the public is invited to attend.

Nancy Thomas uses her experience with leadership, conflict prevention, diversity, and ethics to assist universities and schools with specialized programs and forums. In addition to her work with The Democracy Imperative, Thomas has served as director of the Democracy Project and the Religion and Public Life initiatives for the Society for Values in Higher Education; director of Listening to Communities for the American Council on Education; and senior associate at the New England Resource Center for Higher Education. She has written many articles and book chapters related to democracy, constitutional principles, and higher education.

Dr. Thomas earned her A.B. from St. Lawrence University, a Juris Doctorate from Case Western Reserve University School of Law, and her Ed.D. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

The Democracy Imperative-Mobilizing Higher Education for Deliberative Democracy is a resource center and national network of scholars and civic and campus leaders. This group attempts to support and promote community dialogues about issues of social identity, democracy, and civil liberty. The Democracy Imperative is sponsored by the University of New Hampshire.

This lecture is part of Wells’ Inclusive and Intercultural Excellence Series, an annual year-long event. The series aims to engage the greater Wells community in considering issues of interculturalism and inclusiveness at the institutional, local, national, and global levels. For the 2008-09 year, its theme is Transcending Boundaries through Democratic Practice. 

For more information about this lecture and the Inclusive and Intercultural Excellence Series at Wells, please contact Director of Institutional Diversity Stephen Gilchrist at 315/364-3463.

April, 2009


Spring Faculty Dance Concert at Wells College

“Dancing Room” is alternative, informal studio performance

Jeanne GoddardThe Wells College Performing Arts Department is pleased to present Dancing Room, an informal studio concert conceived and directed by Robert D. and Henrietta T. Campbell Professor of Dance Jeanne Goddard. Performances are Monday, April 13 and Tuesday, April 14 at 7:00 pm in the Schwartz Athletic Center dance studio. There is no admission charge and the public is warmly invited to attend. Refreshments will be available before and after the performance.

Dancing Room, performed in the studio where Wells College students take their daily classes, places the emphasis on community, on dance, and on creative process as a part of the college experience. Professor Goddard says, “This room, this floor, is an inclusive space, a familiar space, a comfortable space.” Audiences will experience original dance works “up close and personal” and have an opportunity to talk with the choreographers and the performers.

“When I was awarded the Campbell professorship, I was both honored by the award and inspired,” said Goddard. “I wanted to create a particular type of dance concert that would provide for the Wells community an alternative to our more formal productions in Phipps Auditorium.” This year’s concert will be the first in a series of five.

Dancing Room showcases both student and faculty choreography, including a number of premiers. Guest artist Elizabeth Wilmot-Bishop’s tap class will perform, and students from the Women Making Dance seminar, Sarah Clark ’11, Rebecca Danis ’10, Catherine Marshall ’11, Khadeja Merenkov ’11, and Shannon Sass ’10, will show “Where I Come From,” a suite of original dance studies on the theme of character and place.

Professor Goddard will premier “And so…,” a bittersweet quintet set to Max Bruch’s haunting “Kol Nidre” that she describes as “a gift” for dancers Arianna Bickford ’12, Heather Frost ’09, Eden Kostick ’10, Iivy Murphy ’09, and Tiffany Orellana ’09. She will also restage her absurdist piece, “Those Ducks Aren’t Bobbing for Golf Balls” with baritone Steven Stull and pianist Russell Posegate performing the songs of Franz Schubert and Ralph Vaughan Williams. Mr. Posegate and Mr. Stull will perform additional music on the program, and Professor Goddard promises a choreographic tribute to her dog, Hazelnut.

Student members of the Wells Dance Ensemble are: Ryan Addario ’10, Brittany Bouchard ’11, Megan Chamberlain ’08, Michelle Chase ’11, Sara Chiochetti ’11, Mary Gooding ’10, Janin Hendry ’08, Kostick, Marshall, Murphy, Orellana, Julia Swisher ’09, and Michaela Wilson ’11.

For more information about the Dancing Room concert, please contact Professor Goddard at 315/364-3213.

April, 2009


Wells College Presents Absurdist Drama

Students will perform a pair of one-act plays

The Wells College Theatre Department presents Escurial and The Maids, two plays from the Absurdist movement. Performances will take place on Friday and Saturday, April 3 and 4, at 7:30 pm, with a Sunday matinee on April 5 at 2:00 pm in Phipps Auditorium, Macmillan Hall. The show is free and the public is warmly invited to attend. 

Beginning Monday, March 30 and leading up to the weekend performances, Wells will host “Absurd Week,” a series of events related to the Theatre of the Absurd. Each afternoon at 2:30, there will be a featured presentation in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. Faculty from various disciplines will lead round-table discussions, lecture, or give visual presentations based on the Absurdist movement and the specific plays being performed.

Absurd Week culminates with two plays. The first performance, Michel De Ghelderode’s Escurial, is a story in which a king and jester switch roles while waiting for the queen’s death to be announced. Wells’ Technical Director and Facilities Manager Joe DeForest will direct the play. “It has all the elements that have always drawn me to theatre,” he says. “It is the consummate story, complete with twists and turns, comedy and tragedy, and abundantly descriptive to its scenic mien.”

The second performance is Jean Genet’s The Maids. In this play, based on the true story of Christine and Lea Papin, two sisters working as maids plot to murder their mistress in 1933 France. “I’ve been interested in directing an absurdist play for some time,” says director Siouxsie Grady, assistant professor of theatre at Wells. “I am completely fascinated by the relationships and characters in this play.”

In addition to the plays, each program will feature a short original dance choreographed by Wells students Eden Kostick ’10 and Arianna Bickford ’12. Scene and costume designs by Roberta Kolpakas and lighting design by DeForest tie the pieces together. Due to intense moments, adult themes, and strong language, the production is recommended for ages 16 and up. Escurial and The Maids are produced by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

For more information about these performances and other theatrical productions at Wells, please contact Ms. Kolpakas or Professor Grady at 315/364-3232.

March, 2009


Wells College Hosts Distinguished Literary Critic

M. H. Abrams will speak on British poetry

IThe Wells College Visiting Writer Series is pleased to announce that distinguished scholar and literary critic M. H. Abrams will return to campus to give an informal lecture on British poetry and the art of reading poetry aloud. The discussion will be held on Thursday, April 2 at 4:45 pm in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. The free event will be followed by a reception with an opportunity to meet Abrams; light refreshments will be served. 

M.H. Abrams is professor emeritus of English at Cornell University, where he began teaching in 1945. Abrams has earned widespread acclaim as the author of several books on literary theory. Two are regarded as among the most important and influential works of 20th century literary criticism: The Mirror and the Lamp: Romantic Theory and the Critical Tradition received the 1954 Phi Beta Kappa Christian Gauss Prize, and Natural Supernaturalism: Tradition and Evolution in Romantic Literature was the recipient of the 1972 James Russell Lowell Prize. 

Abrams is also the founding editor of the internationally successful Norton Anthology of English Literature and The Glossary of Literary Terms.

A preeminent scholar of English literature, Abrams is a Harvard alumnus, earning his A.B. in 1934, A.M. in 1937, and Ph.D. in 1940. He was a Henry Fellow at Cambridge University in 1934-35. His honors include the 1984 Award in Humanistic Studies from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the 1987 Distinguished Scholar Award from the Keats-Shelley Society, and the 1990 Award for Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

The Wells College Visiting Writer Series invites poets and writers to campus throughout the academic year to meet with students, present writing workshops, and read from their respective works.

For more information about Dr. Abrams’ lecture, please contact Professor Catherine Burroughs at 315/364-3247.

March, 2009


Wells College Inaugural Men’s Basketball Season Finishes with a Bang

The Express one step away from NCAA tournament berth

Wells College Mens BasketballIn what was one of the most remarkable seasons in recent Wells athletic history, the inaugural men’s basketball season concluded on March 1, one game away from a berth in the NCAA Division III men’s basketball tournament. Once the dust had settled, the team finished the season with a 14-14 record. 

Yet the real story is that six freshmen and four juniors, representing four different states, came together under Head Coach Joe Wojtylko to build a men’s basketball program at Wells College. Due to fire code regulations that precluded them from playing in their new home court this year, the team played 25 of their 28 games on the road; three home games were played without spectators. Despite these challenges, ten players and one determined coach built in one season a Wells basketball team that became one of the more competitive programs in the conference.

The Express earned their first win in program history on November 18, defeating Hilbert College 77-59. Although they would start 1-6, the Express found their stride and ended the rest of the season 11-7, ultimately earning the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament. After victories over SUNY Cobleskill and University of Dallas, the Express fell to No. 1 SUNY IT 78-49 in the North Eastern Athletic Conference tournament final game.

Among the lead players of the year is two-time NEAC Player of the Week Darrell Bullock ’10 of Chicago. Bullock’s 20.8 points per game (ppg) ranked him first in the conference and 24th in the nation. Juan Paulino ‘11 of Bronx, NY averaged a double-double (14.2 ppg, 14.6 rpg) for the season and was also named NEAC Player of the Week in February. 

Eight of the ten players averaged over 16 minutes per game during the season. Five players averaged over five points per game, with three averaging over ten points per game (Bullock, Paulino, and freshman Greg Jones with 13.3 ppg). 

The Express played such long-established programs as Hobart, Hamilton, and Bates, defeating Hobart in the Regis Holiday Tournament.  They knocked off NEAC favorites D’Youville and Keuka along the way, and although they watched another team walk off with the conference championship, they finished their inaugural season with heads held high, knowing every player there on Sunday would be back on the court October 15 ready to write chapter two in the Wells College men’s basketball history book.

Wells College is a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III member and joined the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) in fall 2007. The College currently offers the following intercollegiate teams — Women: field hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, and cross country; a new basketball program will be offered next winter at the club level and will elevate to varsity the following year. Men: soccer, swimming, lacrosse, cross country, and now basketball. A new mixed golf team will compete at the varsity level this spring. The College continues to develop plans for additional sport sponsorship that are inclusive of both men and women, and meet the needs of college students today. 

For more information about Wells’ inaugural basketball season, please contact Sports Information Director Aaron Bouyea via e-mail at abouyea@wells.edu. Additional information about Wells athletics may be found at www.wells.edu/athletics

March, 2009


Wells College Continues Indigenous Women’s Speaker Series

Lecture features Dartmouth College professor, tribal mentor

Vera PalmerDartmouth College lecturer Vera Palmer will speak at Wells College on Monday, March 30. Her talk, “Kateri’s Way: Indigenous Politics of Mourning,” is the first in Wells’ 2008-09 Indigenous Women’s Speaker Series. The free presentation will begin at 12:30 pm in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall; the public is welcome to attend.

The lecture “Kateri’s Way: Indigenous Politics of Mourning” focuses on the life of Kateri Tekakwitha (1656-1680), a 17th century Iroquoian convert to Christianity. Kateri is a candidate for canonization and may become the first American Indian female saint. Palmer’s presentation reinforces Kateri’s cultural identity as a Native by expanding notions of her indigenous life beyond Jesuit interpretations.

Vera Palmer is currently a senior lecturer and tribal mentor in the Native American Studies Program at Dartmouth College. While pursuing her master’s degree at Bryn Mawr College, Palmer organized and led a Peace Studies Mission to several Anishinabe, Diné, and Hopi communities to introduce students and faculty participants to tribal leaders who work for justice and sovereignty. She also collaborated with Bryn Mawr’s English and Philosophy departments to create and co-teach the first Native American Literature course offered at that college. Before leaving Philadelphia in 1995, she was awarded the Philadelphia Mayor’s Commission Award—Women Who Make a Difference—for her activism on behalf of the American Indian community. 

Palmer is a recipient of a Ford Foundation pre-doctoral fellowship and the Frances B. Allen Fellowship at the D’Arcy McNickle Center for American Indian History at the Newberry Library, Chicago. While teaching at Cornell University, she created the Native American Indian Prisoners’ Support Program within two New York State maximum security facilities. She received the Robinson-Appel Humanitarian Award in recognition of her work on this project.

The Indigenous Women Speakers Series was introduced last year as a way to augment Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies Lisa Kahaleole Hall’s Indigenous Women’s Experiences course, part of the College’s Women’s Studies and First Nations and Indigenous Studies curriculum. The series aims to open discussion of relevant issues to the broadest campus community. This talk is sponsored by the Women’s Studies, Religion, and Sociology/Anthropology Departments and the Social Science Colloquium. 

For more information about Vera Palmer’s talk and the Indigenous Women’s Speaker Series at Wells, please call Assistant Professor Hall at 315.364.3272.

March, 2009


Wells College Students Journey to Powershift 2009

Wells students join forces with 10,000 other youth in Washington, D.C. to advocate for action on climate, energy, economy

Power Shift 2009Twelve Wells College students and two professors will join with others from Cornell University, Ithaca College, Ithaca High School and the Alternative Community School for Power Shift ’09 in Washington, D.C.  this weekend. From February 27 – March 2, more than 10,000 young leaders from across the country will converge on the nation’s capital to demand that the President and Congress pass a bold climate and energy policy that prioritizes renewable energy, green job creation, and an aggressive cap on carbon emissions.

Wells’ participation is being coordinated by seniors Tess Kahn, a history major from Woodstock, Vt., and international studies major Erin Hutton of Tampa, Fla.

“For Power Shift 2007, nearly 5,500 youth descended on Washington, D.C., entered the halls of Congress, and rallied on the lawn of Capitol Hill to demand bold action on climate change,” said Hutton. “Now, in the first 100 days of the Obama administration, we’re ready to do it again with double that number. At Power Shift 2009, we will work with our new government to demand swift action on climate change.”

The Power Shift ’09 summit kicks off this Friday, February 27 with a press conference featuring Nancy Pelosi and youth leaders; it culminates on Monday, March 2 with a gathering of thousands of youth on Capitol Hill. Musical guests include The Roots and Santigold. The four-day summit will also feature a variety of seminars, panels and workshops; a “green” career fair; legislative briefings and activist trainings; and a day of action, where thousands of youth will lobby their Congressional representatives on a number of issues, most particularly the economy and the environment.

Currently, New York State has the largest number of attendees — more than 900; about 1/5 of those will be from colleges and universities in the Finger Lakes region. Wells’ contingent will be accompanied by Professors of Psychology Milene Morfei and Deborah Gagnon.

“We are at a critical point in our nation's history,” continues Hutton. “We have the chance to work with our new leadership to build a new green economy and address our climate crisis with the passage of bold climate and energy policies. We won’t allow this moment to pass us by.”

Power Shift ’09 is organized by the Energy Action Coalition, which has grown over the past four years to include 50 national organizations, over 700 local groups and hundreds of thousands of young people, all working together to successfully fight for clean energy solutions and the creation of a new green economy.

For more information about Wells’ participation in Power Shift ’09, please contact Professor Milene Morfei at 315.364.3255. Additional information about Power Shift ’09 may be found at: www.powershift09.org

March, 2009


“SurfLand” Art Exhibition Opens at Wells College

Photographs by Brooklyn artist Joni Sternbach will be displayed

Photograph by Joni SternbachThe Wells College Visual Arts Department presents “SurfLand,” an exhibition of tintype and digital photographs by Brooklyn artist Joni Sternbach. The show, which focuses primarily on contemporary surfer culture, will be on display in the String Room Gallery in Main Building from March 4 through April 2. Admission is free and the public is cordially invited to view the gallery. A reception on Wednesday, March 11 from 6:00-8:00 pm offers an opportunity to meet the artist; light refreshments will be served.

“SurfLand” will feature photographs by Joni Sternbach and a video piece co-created by Bruce Milne. All of the works in this show have surfers as the subject and were shot using a 19th century method known as the wet-plate process. The resulting image is a one-of-a-kind photograph (tintype), as there is no negative; there are ten tintype works in the exhibition. The other ten show images are archival pigment prints (digital prints) modified from wet plate photographs. This combination creates a tension between new and old media that offers a striking contrast to modern methods of digital and electronic photography.

Photographer Joni Sternbach has received numerous awards and recognition for her work, including 2007’s Hardcover Monograph from Critical Mass; fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts and its predecessor, Creative Artist Public Service; and residencies with the Center for Land Use Interpretation in Wendover, Utah and with Light Work at Syracuse University. Her work can be found in the collections of the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian, Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts, the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Cleveland Museum of Art, New York’s International Center of Photography, and Paris's Bibliothèque nationale.

This exhibition was organized by the artist and Wells’ Assistant Professor of Art History and String Room Gallery Director William Ganis. “It’s great to have these compelling images of summer beaches here to uplift us during mud season,” said Ganis. “The artist photographs people from our day using a revitalized medium – this results in a striking ambiguity whereby the subjects seem to be both contemporary and from Victorian times.”

Ganis expands on these ideas in an essay that accompanies the show.

The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information about the show at Wells, please contact String Room director William Ganis at 315/364-3465 and visit the Gallery’s webpage.

March, 2009


Distinguished Photographer to Lecture at Wells

Carrie Mae Weems will speak on “Constructing History” 

Carrie Mae WeemsWells College has invited distinguished African-American photographer Carrie Mae Weems to deliver this year’s Beckman Lecture. Weems will speak on “Constructing History” on Wednesday, March 4. The lecture will begin at 4:45 pm in Macmillan Hall’s Phipps Auditorium. The presentation is free and open to the public. 

Weems has spent her professional career examining issues of race and gender through photography, installation, audio, and video. She has created a number of multimedia projects around topics such as international humanitarian crises, U.S. traditions of education for African Americans and Native Americans, racial and gender issues in genetic research, family and personal identity, and the history of the African diaspora. 

“Despite the variety of my explorations,” she says in her biography, “throughout it all, it has been my contention that my responsibility as an artist is to work, to sing for my supper, to make art, beautiful and powerful, that adds and reveals, to beautify the mess of a messy world, to heal the sick and the helpless, to shout bravely from the rooftops and storm-barricaded doors and voice the specifics of our historic moment.”

Carrie Mae Weems has received numerous awards and honors, including Women in Photography International’s 2005 Distinguished Photographer’s Award, the 1996 Alpert Award for Visual Arts, and a 1994 Visual Arts Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. She has served as artist-in-residence at such institutions as Syracuse University, Wellesley College, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Rhode Island School of Design. Her work has been displayed in one-person exhibitions in many universities, at the Beacon Cultural Foundation, New York City’s Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

The Beckman Lecture Fund was established in 1952 by three Wells alumnae.  The Beckman sisters endowed the fund “with sincere appreciation of the enduring character of a Wells education.” They desired that Beckman lecturers “be distinguished for creative work and the ability to teach. The lecturer should be an original thinker, an artist in his or her field who can communicate easily and with enthusiasm.” 

For more information about the Beckman Lecture and Carrie Mae Weems’ visit to campus, please contact Kelly Buck Tehan, Director of Publications & Media Relations, at 315-364-3260 or email ktehan@wells.edu

February, 2009


Lost and Found at Wells College

Interdisciplinary performance installation to be presented Feb. 27 - March 1

Lost and FoundWells College is pleased to welcome the public to an interdisciplinary performance work. The exhibit, Lost and Found, can be found in the String Room Art Gallery from February 27–March 1. An opening reception will be held on Friday, February 27 from 6:00–8:00 pm; the free live performance will begin at 7:00 pm. A repeat performance will be presented at 7:00 pm on Saturday, February 28. All are invited.

Lost and Found examines the question “What don’t we go looking for?” It visually, interactively, and aurally explores items and people that are lost to us, dance or talk their way back, and are refused. The daytime exhibit features photography, 2-D and 3-D art, maps and collage. The evening performances also include dance, theatre and music.

“I became intrigued with items that are judged as ‘junk’ or ‘garbage’, but which are essentially ‘lost’,” says Assistant Professor of Theatre Siouxsie Grady. “What do we discard—string, gum wrappers, people, gloves? When do we decide not to look for them?”

Lost and Found is the result of a collaboration between Grady and Professor of Dance Jeanne Goddard. Contributing artists include Lecturer in Performing Arts Roberta Kolpakas of Ithaca; interdisciplinary artists Robert Conlon of Sienna Heights College and Caron Gonthier of New Hampshire; and Wells College students from the Women Making Dance course: Sarah Clark ’11, Becca Danis ’10, Elsa Dial ’11, Cat Marshall ’11, Khadeja Merenkov ’11, and Shannon Sass ’10. The score will include an original soundscape by local musician Ethan MacCormick of Aurora and a sound design by Sarah Clark. Students from the Production Practical course have also contributed many hours to the design and execution of the exhibit.

The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Wednesday evenings from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. For this show, the gallery will also be open from 7:00-9:00 pm on February 27 and 28.

For more information about Lost and Found, please contact Assistant Professor Grady at 315/364-3232 and visit http://www.wells.edu/stringroomgallery/exhibitions/lost/lost1.htm

February, 2009


Wells College Hosts Discussion by International Human Rights Activist

Georgian human rights lawyer, Cornell fellow Anna Dolidze discusses Russian conflict

Anna DolidzeOn Monday, November 3, Wells College welcomes human rights activist Anna Dolidze, who will give a talk on “International Human Rights and the Current Georgian/Russian Conflict.” Her presentation will take place at 12:30 pm in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. The event is free and will be followed by a reception with an opportunity to meet the speaker.

Anna V. Dolidze is a human rights lawyer and a visiting fellow at Cornell University Law School. Her interests lie in human rights law, research and documentation, comparative constitutional law, public international law, and rule of law reform in transitional systems. She is an advisor on human rights and rule of law issues to such organizations as Human Rights Watch, Russian Justice Initiative, Open Society Institute, the United Nations, and others.

In 2007-2008, Ms. Dolidze was a visiting fellow at the Harriman Institute of Columbia University and Hauser Global Fellow at the New York University Law School. She is the former president of the Georgian Young Lawyers Association (GYLA). Established in 1994, GYLA is an influential non-profit organization in Georgia that focuses on areas of rule of promotion, legal reform, developing legal education, building civil society networks, and ensuring transparency and accountability within the government. 

Ms. Dolidze is currently teaching the course “United Nations Simulation” at Wells College, and classes at the Elmira Correctional Facility through the Bard Prison Initiative.

Ms. Dolidze’s husband is writer, scholar, and peace and human rights activist Irakli Kakabadze.  Kakabadze is one of the leading contemporary Georgian writers, and is a founding member and chairman of the Egalitarian Institute, a well-known human rights advocacy organization in Georgia. He was also one of the leading members of the student movement against Soviet domination in 1989-90; together the group of writers and intellectuals founded the civic disobedience committee that led to the Rose Revolution, a non-violent change of power in Georgia in November 2003. He holds an M.S. in conflict resolution from George Mason University, and now works at Cornell University as a visiting scholar through Ithaca’s City of Asylum Project. Kakabadze gave a reading and talk on the Wells campus in September.

This lecture is part of Wells’ new Inclusive and Intercultural Excellence Series, an annual year-long event. The series aims to engage the greater Wells community in considering issues of interculturalism and inclusiveness at the institutional, local, national, and global levels. For the 2008-09 year, its theme is Transcending Boundaries through Democratic Practice. 

For more information about this lecture and the Inclusive and Intercultural Excellence Series at Wells, please contact Director of Institutional Diversity Stephen Gilchrist at 315/364-3463.

February, 2009


8th Annual Gospel Workshop Weekend at Wells College

Community members invited to join in uplifting workshop, concert

The eighth annual Wells College Gospel Workshop and Concert Weekend will be held February 20 and 21, 2009. The workshop is a two-day event in which Wells College’s gospel choir Appointed and singers from the surrounding communities come together to learn about and engage in singing this inspiring genre of music. No auditions are required and the event is free and open to the general public. Everyone is warmly invited to lift their voices during this inspirational weekend event; singers are asked to register by February 12 by calling 315-364-3330 or emailing rcooper@wells.edu.

The Gospel Workshop Weekend is coordinated by the Department of Student Life and Appointed. Professional gospel virtuosos L. Kirk Hatcher of Miami, Fla. and Ed “Chief” Menifee, Jr. of Atlanta, Ga. have been invited once again to serve as choir director and music director, respectively. On Thursday, February 19, Menifee will also be teaching a free master class on piano accompaniment and gospel music.

All rehearsals and the concert will be held in Barler Recital Hall on the Wells campus. The weekend schedule is as follows:

Thursday, February 19
Master class  12:30 p.m.

Friday, February 20
Rehearsal  7:00-9:00 p.m.

Saturday, February 21
Breakfast   8:00 a.m.
Rehearsal/workshop  9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 
Lunch    1:15 p.m. 
Warm-up & group photo 5:30 p.m.
Concert   7:00 p.m.
Reception   8:30 p.m.

Participants must attend both rehearsals. For more information, please contact Rebecca Cooper at 315/364-3330 or email: rcooper@wells.edu; those who would like to sing are requested to register with Rebecca by February 12.

February, 2009


BalletX to Perform at Wells College

Innovative Philadelphia dance company comes to Aurora February 19

BalletXThe Wells College Arts & Lecture Series Committee is pleased to bring Philadelphia’s BalletX to campus on Thursday evening, February 19. The troupe, known for its striking original choreography, will perform in Phipps Auditorium, Macmillan Hall, at 7:30 p.m. Prices are $10 for the general public; $5 for students, seniors, children, and the Wells College community; and free for Wells students with ID. Tickets are available at the door the night of the show or from the box office the preceding week; call 315/364-3456 to reserve seats. 

Philadelphia dance company BalletX redefines ballet with a 21st century twist. While firmly rooted in rigorous classical ballet training and technique, BalletX brings an exciting contemporary sensibility to the art form, infusing its work with a new vision of athleticism, emotion and intimacy. 

The company’s founding co-artistic directors Matthew Neenan and Christine Cox were longtime dancers for the Pennsylvania Ballet. Seeking new outlets for creative expression, they left the company in 2000 to rethink the classical tradition, explore uncharted artistic horizons, and create a company focused on choreography.  The result is BalletX, which has won acclaim for its stylish, skillful performances and dazzling original choreography.

BalletX debuted to critical acclaim in 2005 at the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival. The company has since performed at Philadelphia’s DanceBoom, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, and numerous other venues; it has also been named the resident dance company of the Wilma Theatre in Philadelphia. 

This performance at Wells College will feature, among others, Neenan’s new “Steelworks,” a full company production which experiments with movement, space, and direction. The piece is set to music by emerging young composer Anna Clyne of London and New York City. “Steelworks” premiered at the Wilma Theatre last November.

Each year, the Wells College Arts & Lecture Series brings professional artists to campus to perform, to speak on relevant issues, and to represent the disciplines of theatre, music, and dance. Groups and individuals are selected annually by a committee composed of Wells faculty, staff and students.

For more information about the BalletX performance at Wells and the Wells Arts & Lecture Series, please contact Rebecca Cooper, Series coordinator, at 315/364-3330 or visit the College’s Web site: www.wells.edu. More information on BalletX may be found at www.BalletX.org.

February, 2009


Mahalia Jackson Tribute Concert at Wells College

Cory Walker and Russell Posegate to perform

Mahalia JacksonThe Performing Arts Department at Wells College is pleased to offer a tribute to gospel great Mahalia Jackson. On Sunday, February 15, tenor Cory Walker of Ithaca will perform songs by the legendary singer, accompanied on piano by Wells music lecturer Russell Posegate, also of Ithaca. The free concert will take place at 7:30 pm in Barler Recital Hall. The public is cordially invited to attend.

Mahalia Jackson (1911-1972) was an African-American gospel singer, widely regarded as the best in the genre. Known as “the Queen of Gospel,” she was raised in New Orleans. The performance will feature Jackson’s transcriptions of spirituals and gospel classics such as “When the Saints Go Marching In,” “His Eye Is on the Sparrow,” and “Elijah Rock.”

Cory Walker is a recent master’s graduate from Ithaca College. He has been involved in summer theatre productions in New England and has spent time with Opera Boston and the New England Light Opera. Russell Posegate received his B.A. in music education and M.M. in piano performance from Ithaca College. He performs regularly with a variety of groups that play throughout Central New York.

For more information about the performance, please contact Professor Posegate at 315/364-3343

February, 2009


Wells College Joins Teach-In on Global Warming

National observance takes place February 5

National Teach-In on Global WarmingWells College is participating in the National Teach-In on Global Warming on Thursday, February 5. Recognizing the importance of sustainability and assuming individual responsibility, Wells joins with thousands of colleges, universities, high schools, middle schools, faith groups, civic organizations and businesses across the United States to engage in climate dialogue, raise awareness about global warming, and encourage individuals to affect change.

Professors Deborah Gagnon, Milene Morfei, and Candace Collmer are spearheading Wells’ involvement. 

“It is crucial for Wells to be involved in this important national event,” said Gagnon, associate professor of psychology. “We are galvanizing our campus community early in the semester so that our momentum carries us through the spring and into the future. We’re a small campus with the real ability to have a small carbon footprint if we make strategic, conscientious decisions now. The panel discussion we’ve planned will address the remarkable things we’re already doing on campus and consider additional initiatives to which we can commit.”

The National Teach-In coincides with the first 100 days of the Obama administration. In addition to the events listed below, Wells is sending a contingent to Washington, D.C. in late February to the Power Shift meeting, which aims to affect policy on energy issues at the federal level.

The schedule for National Teach-In on Global Warming events on the Wells College campus is below. All activities are free and the public is encouraged to attend.

Wednesday, February 4
Webcast: “Solutions for the First 100 Days” followed by moderated discussion
4:30 pm, Stratton Hall 209

Thursday, February 5

    • Many faculty have committed to focusing on global warming, and will hold discussions in their classrooms about sustainability

    • Low carbon menus served in the dining hall

    • Panel Discussion: “Are Our Feet Too Big? How Wells is Tackling Its Carbon Footprint” 12:30 pm, Stratton 209. Moderator: Professor of Psychology Milene Morfei

    • Film Screening “Ecology and Contemporary Art”  1:45 pm, Morgan Hall 21.  Moderator: Assistant Professor of Art History William Ganis

    • Art and the Environment  3:00 pm, Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. Moderator: Associate Professor of Psychology Deb Gagnon 

-Art Exhibit: “Black Birds of Valdez” by Professor of Art William Roberts 
-Improvisational Dance by Professor of Dance Jeanne Goddard 
-Poetry Reading: “poems by Gary Snyder, American poet and environmentalist” by Professor of English Bruce Bennett

  • · Panel Discussion: “Reducing Our Carbon Footprint: Individual Responsibility and Public Policy”  4:40 pm, Stratton 209. Moderator: Professor of Biology Candace Collmer

“We specifically tried to get as many faculty across the disciplines involved in this as possible – it’s all interconnected, and individual responsibility is one of the big messages of this day,” said Gagnon

Please contact Professors Deb Gagnon (315-364-3307 or dgagnon@wells.edu) or Milene Morfei (315-364-3255 or mzmorfei@wells.edu) to learn more about Wells College’s participation in the National Teach-In on Global Warming. More about the National Teach-In in general may be found at http://www.nationalteachin.org/index.php
February, 2009


Wells College Joins National Recyclemania

RecycleMania competition kicks off with record-breaking number of participating schools

RecyclemaniaWells College has joined with more than 500 other colleges and universities across the country for the friendly RecycleMania competition. RecycleMania pits schools in an annual nationwide contest to see who can reduce, reuse, and recycle the most campus waste.

“Last fall, President Ryerson signed the climate commitment which ensures that Wells College moves towards being a greener campus,” said senior Dana Spinnler of Houston, Texas. “We heard about RecycleMania and thought it would be a good way for the Wells community to support that commitment.”

Spinnler and Alexandra Beck, a senior from Carthage, NY, are coordinating Wells’ participation in Recyclemania.

Over a 10-week period, from January 18 to March 28, participating schools will compete in a variety of recycling and waste prevention efforts. This year's 510 participating schools, the most in the competition's history, represent all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Wells joins three dozen other New York colleges – the Empire State and California boast 37 participating schools each, topped only by Pennsylvania with 48.

RecycleMania helps campus recycling coordinators rally student, faculty, and staff participation in recycling and waste prevention programs, while offering bragging rights and special awards made out of recycled materials to the winning schools. RecycleMania motivates campus communities to recycle more often. By framing recycling in competitive terms, the effort taps the same intercollegiate spirit that drives sports rivalries.

“RecycleMania is important because even small communities like Wells can consume a large amount of resources and produce much waste,” said Beck. “If we are able to change lifestyles and behaviors within our own community, perhaps we can change others’ thinking as well.”

Each week, the standings are posted online, motivating campuses to work harder for the top prizes. 

The RecycleMania competition is administered by the National Recycling Coalition, with program development and planning by a steering committee made up of collegiate recycling managers from participating universities. The competition is managed in conjunction with NRC's College and University Recycling Council.

More about RecycleMania may be found at www.recyclemaniacs.org. Contact Wells’ Director of Campus Involvement Elly Ventura (315.364.3428 or eventura@wells.edu) to learn more about the College’s participation.

January, 2009


Annual Student Art Show Opens at Wells College

Work by more than 50 students to be featured 

Wells College Student Art Show Spring 2009An eclectic mix of art will be on display in Wells College’s String Room Gallery from February 4 – 26. Artwork produced by students enrolled in studio art classes during the fall 2008 semester will be shown. The annual student art exhibition is free and the public is cordially invited to view the show. An opening reception with refreshments on Wednesday, February 4 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm offers an opportunity to meet the student artists and view and discuss their work.

More than 50 students are exhibiting their work this winter. Media represented include ceramic pottery and sculpture, paintings, drawings, prints, book arts, and digital images.

Professors of Art Theodore Lossowski and William Roberts guided and instructed the students during the fall semester. They oversaw the students’ work in the studios and collaborated with String Room Gallery director William Ganis on the installation of the show. 

The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Wednesday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information about the student art show, please contact Professor Lossowski at 315/364-3344 and go to http://www.wells.edu/stringroomgallery/exhibitions/room/room1.htm

January, 2009


Wells College and Cayuga Lake Floating Classroom Collaborate on Programs

John Ben Snow Foundation grants $10,000 for “Northern Cayuga Communities Outreach Initiative”

M/V HaendelWells College and the Cayuga Lake Floating Classroom Project have been jointly awarded a $10,000 grant from the John Ben Snow Foundation of Syracuse to fund a collaborative outreach initiative on Cayuga Lake.

Wells has partnered with the Floating Classroom Project since its inception in 2002. The two entities are now working together on “Northern Cayuga Communities Outreach Initiative,” a program that delivers quality educational programming opportunities to schools throughout the Cayuga Lake watershed and vicinity, most specifically at the northern end of Cayuga Lake. 

For the past several years, the Floating Classroom Project has offered a high level of service for schools at the south end of the lake, nearer to Ithaca. Thanks to this new funding, teachers at the north end have now also had the opportunity to take advantage of the on-board activities available on the Project’s vessel, the M/V Haendel.

“As an extension project of the Cayuga Lake Watershed Intermunicipal Organization, it has always been our mission to serve all of the communities around the lake,” said Bill Foster, chair of the Floating Classroom Project, headquartered in Ithaca. “This grant has provided an opportunity to jump-start our services for schools and communities around the northern half of Cayuga Lake.”

Specifically, the Snow Foundation monies have enabled the Project to move the M/V Haendel to the north end of the lake for free introductory programs to schools in Cayuga and Seneca Counties. The field trips feature a cruise on Cayuga Lake for ecological monitoring, coupled with a visit to Wells’ lab facilities for a closer look at lake biology and the creation of eco-mosaics, which combine art and science. 

Last fall, over 200 students from Seneca Falls, Union Springs and Southern Cayuga middle and high schools, Cayuga County BOCES, and Peachtown School got a chance to cruise Cayuga Lake as a result of this important funding.  “With programming already established in South Seneca and other districts, the Floating Classroom can now say it is hosting students from every community around Cayuga Lake,” notes Foster.

The Northern Communities Outreach Initiative will continue in 2009, with the Floating Classroom hosting additional class trips, and working with school districts to secure continued funding.  At least one public cruise will be offered to allow families and other residents to share the students’ experience, and to ask their own questions. 

The Cayuga Lake Watershed Network (CLWN) was founded in 1998 in Ithaca and operated for several years from Interlaken, NY; the organization moved its offices into Zabriskie Hall on the Wells College campus last August. CLWN seeks to protect and improve the ecological health, economic vitality, and overall beauty of the watershed through education, communication, and leadership. The Cayuga Lake watershed covers nearly 1,000 miles and is spread over seven counties: Cayuga, Seneca, Tompkins, Cortland, Ontario, Schuyler, and Tioga.

For more information about the Northern Cayuga Communities Outreach Initiative and the John Ben Snow Foundation grant, please contact Director of Publications & Media Relations Kelly Buck Tehan by calling 315.364.3260 or emailing ktehan@wells.edu. Additional information about Wells College may be found at www.wells.edu.  Information on the Floating Classroom Project is online at www.floatingclassroom.cayugawatershed.org. Inquiries may be made to Bill Foster via phone: 607.272.7256 or email: floatingclassroom@cayugawatershed.org.
January, 2009


Wells College Presents Faculty Piano Recital

Russell Posegate of Ithaca to perform

Russell PosegateThe Music Department at Wells College is pleased to offer an afternoon of piano music. On Sunday, February 1, music lecturer Russell Posegate of Ithaca will present a free concert at 4:00 pm in Barler Recital Hall. The public is cordially invited to attend; the concert will wrap up before Super Bowl kick-off!

The performance will feature the Pastorale Sonata by Beethoven, Pictures at an Exhibition by Modest Mussorgsky, and other works by Mozart and Chopin.

Russell Posegate received his B.A. in music education and M.M. in piano performance from Ithaca College. He performs regularly with a variety of groups that play throughout Central New York. He recently served as piano accompanist for Professor Crawford Thoburn’s 49th annual holiday choir concert.

For more information about the performance, please contact Professor Posegate at 315/364-3343

January, 2009