Wells College News Archives 2010

Stories from the College's news archives.

Kyra Schugt '09 Receives Fulbright Award

Wells alumna teaching in Homberg, Germany


Ms. Kyra L. Schugt, Wells College Class of 2009 (B.A., Art History), was awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship to Germany in Teaching English as a Foreign Language for the 2010-2011 academic year. After an announcement by the United States Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board this summer, Schugt left for the Hessen region of central Germany as one of over 1,500 U.S. citizens traveling abroad this academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program.

Kyra SchugtThe Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States also provide direct and indirect support. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The Program operates in over 155 countries worldwide.

Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has given approximately 300,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.

Kyra Schugt

Fulbright alumni have achieved distinction in government, science, the arts, business, philanthropy, education, and athletics. Forty Fulbright alumni from 11 countries have been awarded the Nobel Prize, and 75 alumni have received Pulitzer Prizes. Prominent Fulbright alumni include: Muhammad Yunus, Managing Director and Founder, Grameen Bank, and 2006 Nobel Peace Prize recipient; John Atta Mills, President of Ghana; Lee Evans, Olympic Gold Medalist; Ruth Simmons, President, Brown University; Riccardo Giacconi, Physicist and 2002 Nobel Laureate; Amar Gopal Bose, Chairman and Founder, Bose Corporation; Renee Fleming, soprano; Gish Jen, Writer; and Daniel Libeskind, Architect.

Kyra SchugtFulbright recipients are among over 40,000 individuals participating in U.S. Department of State exchange programs each year. For more than sixty years, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has funded and supported programs that seek to promote mutual understanding and respect between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is administered by the Institute of International Education.

The photos in this story are courtesy of Kyra, who's keeping a blog with stories from her Fulbright year at liebeausdeutschland.blogspot.com.

December 16, 2010


Wells Students Connect with Local Middle Schoolers

Educational Psychology Class Visits the School to Promote Upcoming Workshops

Professor Brian Duff and Students

Visiting Assistant Professor of Education Bryan Duff and students from his Educational Psychology class visited Southern Cayuga Middle School on November 16 to promote workshops they will offer in December. The workshops will focus on specific study habits that have been well-documented and explained by research in educational psychology.

Southern Cayuga Middle School Students

To generate buzz for the upcoming workshops, Professor Duff and his students staged a version of the popular game show "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?" Filling in for his brother-in-law Jeff Foxworthy (the usual host, who was busy getting his moustache trimmed), "Bryan Duffworthy" asked questions about science, social studies, and study habits. Wells students played the roles of hapless contestants, enthusiastic members of the classroom, and co-hosts who forcefully seized the microphone when Duffworthy spent too much time on less-than-successful jokes.

The middle school students missed many of the questions about study skills, whetting their appetites for answers that will be provided during the December workshops.

December 10, 2010

Michael Jennings to Read at Wells College

Poet and writer will give a reading for the Wells community.

Poet Michael JenningsThe Wells College Visiting Writers Series presents a reading by poet and nonfiction writer Michael Jennings. Jennings will read and discuss some of his recent work at 4:30 p.m. on November 4 in the Art Exhibit Room of Macmillan Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

Jennings is the author of eight books of poems, including Silky Thefts (2007), Once (2008) and Bone-Songs and Sanctuaries: New and Selected Poems (2009), published by The Sheep Meadow Press. His work has been picked up by journals such as the Sewanee Review and Georgia Review. About Bone Songs and Sanctuaries, poet Gregory Djanikian said, "Whether he locates himself in the stark Iranian deserts, or the filigreed, ornate streets of his boyhood New Orleans, or in the wildest landscapes of our primal imagination, Michael Jennings strips to the core in a voice that embodies the rhythms of cycles, migrations, seasons, deaths and rebirths."

Though he was born in New Orleans, Jennings grew up in southwestern Iran. As an undergraduate, he attended the University of Pennsylvania, and he continued through the graduate program in creative writing at Syracuse University. During the 1980s, he ran poetry programs in central New York schools. Jennings is known internationally as a breeder and judge of Siberian huskies, and he has demonstrated his knowledge with several books on the breed. He currently teaches English at Cayuga Community College and lives overlooking Otisco Lake with his wife Suzanne Shane (who is also a poet), their pack of Siberian Huskies, and a cautious cat.

For information about the reading, contact professor of English Bruce Bennett, 315.364.3228, or e-mail brbennett@wells.edu.

The Visiting Writers Series is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, the Virginia Kent Cummins Writers-in-Residence Fund and the Mildred Walker Fiction-Writer-in-Residence Fund.

October 28, 2010

Music and Dance Groups at Wells College to Hold Benefit Concert for Reason 2 Smile

Keela Dates, founder of the organization, will visit campus for the performance.

Keela Dates

Wells College hosts "The Homegrown Concert," an event that will benefit the organization Reason 2 Smile. This show will unite the best of Wells' own talented music groups, dancers, and others into a remarkable evening of musical entertainment. The performance will take place at 7:00 p.m. on November 5 in Phipps Auditorium, Macmillan Hall. Admission is free but donations will be accepted at the door, and the public is welcome to enjoy this inspiring evening while supporting a great cause.

Reason 2 SmileThe concert will raise funds for Reason 2 Smile, a small organization that supports Jambo Jipya School, an orphanage and school in Mtwapa, Kenya. After her graduation from Wells in 2006, Keela Dates traveled to Kenya as a volunteer teacher. Her experiences there led to the founding of Reason 2 Smile, an organization that collects donations to benefit Jambo Jipya School in both the short and long-term. In 2008, the organization was able to purchase a 23-acre plot of land for the school. In the future, Dates hopes that her efforts will reach more, and that Reason 2 Smile will grow to support other schools and orphanages.

Keela Dates will visit the Wells campus to raise awareness of this organization and send needed money to some of the most impoverished of Kenya's children. Wells' long-standing a cappella groups Henry's VIII and The Whirligigs will be performing, along with dancers from campus groups The Dance Collective and Prodigy.

For information about Reason 2 Smile, visit www.reason2smile.org. For information about the performance, contact Susan Talbot, lecturer in education, at 315.364.3246, or e-mail stalbot@wells.edu.

November 2, 2010


Sankofa Brings African Dance and Drums to Wells College

Brockport-based ensemble performs as part of Arts and Lecture Series.

The Sankofa Dance and Drum EnsembleAs part of its annual Arts & Lectures Series, Wells College will host a performance by Sankofa African Dance and Drum Ensemble on Friday, November 12 at 7:30 p.m. The performance will be held in Phipps Auditorium of Macmillan Hall. General admission costs $10, while admission for students, seniors and members of the Wells community costs $6. The event is free for Wells students.

Taking its name from a symbolic Ghanaian expression represented by a bird whose head turns back toward the past, the Sankofa African Dance and Drum Ensemble retrieves the rich cultural heritage of Africa and the African Diaspora and brings it alive for present audiences. Sankofa performs authentic music, drumming and dance from Africa. It also reinterprets African themes and motifs with a contemporary eye and ear. Known for its vibrant costumes, striking lighting, and dynamic drumming and dance, Sankofa offers its audience a lively and enchanting evening.

The Wells College Arts & Lecture Series brings a range of artists and intellectuals to campus annually 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. Sankofa is the series' first offering this academic year.

Tickets are available at the door the night of the concert or from the box office in Macmillan Hall the week preceding the performance. Call 315-364-3456 to reserve.

October 28, 2010


David Godine to Speak at Wells College

Boston Publisher Offers This Year's Book Arts Lecture.

GodineThe Book Arts Center at Wells College has announced that publisher David Godine will present the 30th Susan Garretson Swartzburg Book Arts Lecture on Thursday, October 21 at 5:15 PM in Stratton Auditorium.

Godine is the proprietor of David R. Godine, Inc., a small Boston publishing house that produces between twenty and thirty eclectic titles per year. The company's goal, "to identify the best work and to produce it in the best way possible," means that they feature works that many other publishers can't or won't support, books that won't necessarily become bestsellers but that still deserve publication. Godine's list stands apart by offering original fiction and non-fiction of the highest rank, rediscovered masterworks, translations of outstanding world literature, poetry, art, photography, and beautifully designed books for children.

The company was founded in 1970. After receiving degrees at Dartmouth College and Harvard University, David Godine worked for Leonard Baskin, the renowned typographer and printmaker, and Harold McGrath, his master printer. David Godine opened a printing shop the following year in a deserted barn in Brookline, Massachusetts. His first books, printed on his own presses, were nearly all letterpress, limited editions printed on high-quality rag or handmade paper. Many of these early volumes are now collector's items.

In 1980, the company initiated its children's program, publishing a number of books that have become classics. The Godine editions of Frances Hodgson Burnett's timeless works, The Secret Garden and A Little Princess, together have sold close to half a million hardcover copies. More recently, Godine has launched two new series: Imago Mundi, a line of original books devoted to photography and the graphic arts; and Verba Mundi, featuring the most notable contemporary world literature in translation.

The New York Times has said of him, "David Godine is a remarkable publisher.... He is determined to prove that the day of elegant books has not vanished. And he does prove it. Elegantly." And Newsweek has said, "Godine books are not 'beautiful' in the glossy fashion of the coffee-table books that flood the market at Christmastime. They are instead flawlessly produced examples of the arts of printing and bookbinding, exquisitely understated."

Wells' Book Arts Lecture series is named for Susan Garretson Swartzburg, one of the co-founders of the Center. Swartzburg, Wells class of 1960, had worked tirelessly to promote the fledgling Book Arts Center when she died unexpectedly in 1996. Godine joins a list of distinguished lecturers from across the broad spectrum of book arts. Recent lectures have been given by Mark Dimunation, chief of the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress; Julie Chen, internationally known proprietor of the Flying Fish Press; and Terry Belanger, rare book preservationist, founding director of the Rare Book School and a 2005 fellow of the MacArthur Foundation.

Godine's lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, call 315.364.3420 or contact the Center at bookartscenter@wells.edu.

October 14, 2010


Sculpture Exhibit Opening at Wells College

Modernist sculptor J. Michael Lowe shows metal works in the String Room Gallery.

Land 1

The Wells College Visual Arts Department is proud to announce the second exhibition for the 2010-11 academic year, "Direct Metal Sculpture" by Ithaca artist J. Michael Lowe. The work will be on display in the String Room Gallery (SRG) from October 20 through December 8. The exhibit is free and the public is cordially invited to view the show. An opening reception, to be held on Wednesday, October 20, from 6 - 8 p.m., offers an opportunity to meet the artist; light refreshments will be served.

The exhibition features metal sculptures that the artist has worked by hand through bending, repousse and other shaping techniques. Lowe skillfully uses copper, steel and other metals to create a broad range of expressions--from embossed planes to complex drawings. The SRG's Director, William Ganis, notes, "Lowe's work holds to the tenets of modernism, especially his truth to materials and his finding new spatial solutions for timeless and distinctively sculptural problems."

J. Michael Lowe was born in 1942 in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he attended high school. He earned his BFA degree at Ohio University in 1964 and his MFA in Sculpture from Cornell University in 1966. In 1966 he joined the faculty of St. Lawrence University as an instructor, and he retired holding the G.L. Flint Professorship in Fine Arts. He now resides and works in Ithaca, New York.

For more information, visit www.wells.edu/stringroomgallery/exhibitions.htm.

October 14, 2010


Wells College Visiting Writers Series to Feature Peter Makuck

Poet and writer will read from his recently published collection.

Peter MakuckWells College presents a reading by Peter Makuck, founder and former editor of the poetry magazine Tar River Poetry. The reading will take place at 7:30 p.m. on October 14 in the Art Exhibit Room of Macmillan Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

Makuck will read from Long Lens: New and Selected Poems, a collection published this year by BOA Editions, Ltd. It is his fifth book of poetry through BOA since 1982. Makuck has also published two collections of short stories, Costly Habits (2002) and Breaking and Entering (1981). His poems, stories, and essays have appeared in The Hudson Review, Poetry, The Southern Review, and The Nation, and have been recognized with a Charity Randall Citation from the International Poetry Forum, inclusion in The Best of the LSU Fiction and The Best Essays of 2000, and five honorable mentions in Best American Short Stories. Makuck recently won the Monroe Spears Award "for the best essay to appear in The Sewanee Review in 2010."

Makuck founded Tar River Poetry in 1978 and served as editor until 2006. The magazine, which was listed by the Dictionary of Literary Biography among the top ten poetry journals in the United States, featured an interview with Makuck in the recent 30th anniversary issue. He is currently a reviewer for The Hudson Review and professor emeritus at East Carolina University.

For more information about his writing, visit www.makuck.com. For information about the reading, contact Professor of English Bruce Bennett, 315-364-3228, or e-mail brbennett@wells.edu.

The Wells College Visiting Writers Series is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, the Virginia Kent Cummins Writers-in-Residence Fund and the Mildred Walker Fiction-Writer-in-Residence Fund. You can follow The Visiting Writers Series on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/wellswriters.

October 6, 2010


Columbia University's Jane Ginsburg to speak at Wells College

Phi Beta Kappa lecture will focus on issues of copyright and authorship.

Dr. Jane GinsburgWells College presents a lecture by the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar, Jane Ginsburg. Ginsburg's talk, entitled "The Author's Place in the Future of Copyright," will take place at 4:45 Wednesday, October 6 in Room 209 of Stratton Hall. The event is sponsored by Wells College Chapter Xi of Phi Beta Kappa.

Jane Ginsburg is the Morton L. Janklow Professor of Literary and Artistic Property Law at Columbia University and director of its Kernochan Center for Law, Media, and the Arts. She will address how long-standing economic arrangements and relatively new technologies of creation and dissemination may encroach on authors' copyright protections.

Ginsburg has published numerous books and articles on the subject of copyright and intellectual property protection. While at Harvard, she edited the Harvard Law Review, and she spent three years in private practice before teaching. Her mother, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, was also on the Columbia Law School faculty before being appointed to the United States Court of Appeals.

This lecture is part of the national Phi Beta Kappa organization's Visiting Scholar program. For more information, contact the Wells College PBK chapter president, Visiting Assistant Professor of Education Bryan Duff, at 315.364.3211, or e-mail bduff@wells.edu.

September 23, 2010


Teena Fitzroy to hold her presentation "Junk in My Trunk" at Wells College

BOCES Family Information Specialist will address issues of disability and independence.

Tina FitzroyBOCES Family Information Specialist Teena Fitzroy will give a presentation titled "Junk in My Trunk" at 5 p.m. on Thursday, September 30, in the Lecture Hall (Room 209) of Stratton Hall. In her talk, Fitzroy will discuss the challenges of living with a disability, from working towards independence to overcoming prejudices and stereotypes. The event is sponsored by the Wells College Education Program and Social Sciences Division, and is free and open to the public.

Fitzroy's presentation is an interactive exploration of symbolic items that she has "collected" throughout her life and a description of the "junk" that comes along with them. She invites the audience to provide their own examples of significant treasures. During the discussion, Fitzroy attempts to challenge misconceptions about disabilities and encourage the audience to look beyond the surface.

In her work for BOCES, Fitzroy works with disabled individuals, assisting them with information about community services as they prepare to finish their education. She is a knowledgeable disability advocate who has been involved with motivational speaking for many years. In her own life, Fitzroy has worked to overcome the challenges of living with cerebral palsy.

For information about her work, visit www.teenafitzroy.com. For more information about her Wells visit, contact director of elementary and secondary education Susan Talbot at 315.364.3246, or e-mail stalbot@wells.edu.

September 23, 2010


Suzan Shown Harjo to speak at Wells College

Activist for Native American Rights will discuss the current state of Native lands.

Suzan Shown HarjoSuzan Shown Harjo (Cheyenne & Hodulgee Muscogee), will visit Wells College to give the lecture "Protecting Native Lands and Rights Today" at 5 p.m. on Thursday, September 23 in the Art Exhibit Room of Macmillan Hall. Harjo's talk is part of the year-long educational series "Onondaga Land Rights & Our Common Future II," of which Wells is a participant and sponsor. This event is free and open to the public.

Suzan Harjo has been the president of the Morning Star Institute, an organization that advocates for the rights of Native American groups, for 25 years. She was instrumental in developing legislation such as the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act in 1990 and the 1996 Executive Order of Indian Sacred Sites, and she has helped recover over a million acres of land for Native American peoples. In addition to her activism in support of indigenous rights, Harjo has written poetry and curated art exhibits related to the culture and history of indigenous Americans.

Educational sponsors of the series include Syracuse University; SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry; Le Moyne College; Empire State College; Colgate University Native American Studies Program; Hamilton College Department of Religious Studies; Imagining America; Ithaca College Department of Anthropology & Native American Studies Program; Onondaga Community College; St. Lawrence University Native American Studies Program; SUNY Cortland, Upstate Medical University Office of Diversity & Affirmative Action, and Multicultural Events Planning Committee; and Wells College. Community Sponsors include Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation/Syracuse Peace Council; Indigenous Values Initiative; InterFaith Works; Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation; and the Syracuse Center of Excellence.

The Wells community has supported the Onondaga Land Rights & Our Common Future II Series by co-sponsoring the series and providing van transportation to off-campus discussions and presentations. Wells Professor of Psychology and Gender Studies Vic Munoz coordinated the transportation. For more information on Susan Harjo's lecture, contact Professor Munoz at 315.364.3248, or e-mail vmunoz@wells.edu. For information related to the 2010 Onondaga Land Rights Educational Series, contact Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation at 315.472.5478, email noon@peacecouncil.net, or visit www.peacecouncil.net/noon.

September 21, 2010


Journalist and poet Katha Pollitt to read at Wells College

Columnist for The Nation to present her recent works.

Katha PollittThe Wells College Visiting Writers Series presents a poetry reading and discussion by Nation columnist and award-winning writer Katha Pollitt. The reading will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 22, in the Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall. A separate discussion of her work, sponsored by Wells' Women's Resource Center, will take place at 7:30 p.m. on the following day in the same location. The discussion will be hosted by Professor of English Bruce Bennett, while Professor of Political Science Susan Tabrizi and current seniors Alex Lauer and Emily Ambrose will help guide the questions. The event is free and open to the public, and refreshments will be available.

Pollitt's first book of poetry, Antarctic Traveller, was released in 1982 and earned a National Book Critics Circle Award. She published her second collection, titled The Mind-Body Problem, last year. As a poet, Pollitt has been recognized with a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Book Awards.

Pollitt has written for The Nation since 1980. Her contributions for the magazine have been honored with National Magazine Awards in 1992 and 2003. She has also published writing in The New Yorker, Harper's, Ms., and the New York Times. She has held lectures and discussions for audiences at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Cornell, and many other universities and colleges, and has taught both poetry and women's studies courses.

Her visit is made possible in part by funding from the New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, contact Professor of English Bruce Bennett, 315-364-3228, or e-mail brbennett@wells.edu.

September 21, 2010


Wells College Ranked Among America's Best Colleges and Universities

Wells College Ranked 95th Among American Colleges and Universities by Forbes, and in the Top Tier Among National Liberal Arts Colleges by U.S. News & World Report

forbesWells College has earned high rankings among national colleges and universities, in different annual reports released by Forbes and U.S. News Media Group, publishers of U.S. News & World Report.

Wells College is ranked 95th among America's best colleges and universities by Forbes in its annual report, "America's Best Colleges." Wells was also ranked in the top tier (144th) among national liberal arts colleges in the 2011 edition of "Best Colleges" by U.S. News & World Report.

Wells College has earned a strong reputation for its commitment to an educational experience grounded in mentoring, interdisciplinary thinking, and actively engaging the world beyond the College's lakeside campus. Wells offers innovative, student-centered academic and co-curricular programming, including the newly launched center for business and entrepreneurship. The center will provide a unique interdisciplinary approach to the study of business, an approach grounded in the liberal arts but with different possible concentrations such as arts administration, non-profit management, green business, and entrepreneurship.

The listing by Forbes ranks the top 610 colleges and universities in the country, which is less than 10% of all the accredited postsecondary institutions in the United States. As the editors at Forbes note, simply making the top 610 "is an indication that a school meets a high standard." Forbes ranks the schools "based on the quality of the education they provide, the experiences of the students and how much they achieve."

The 2011 edition of "Best Colleges" published by U.S. News & World Report examines more than 1,400 accredited four-year schools and takes into account factors such as peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving, graduation rate performance, and high school counselor ratings of colleges.

August 23, 2010


Wells College Announces Director of its Center for Business and Entrepreneurship in the Liberal Arts

Robert J. Ellis Brings a Unique Combination of Academic Talents and Business Skills to Wells' New Program

Robert EllisWells College announced that Robert J. Ellis will direct its new center for business and entrepreneurship in the liberal arts. The center is the College's newest academic addition, and is the first step toward the College adding a dedicated business major to its listings.

Ellis, of Cortland, N.Y., brings a unique combination of academic talents and business skills to Wells. Most recently a financial services strategic consultant, Ellis has an extensive background in retail sales and marketing of financial products and services. He also has experience in the fields of banking, brokerage, asset management and insurance, and he has taught undergraduate classes in small business management, financial services management, principles of electronic commerce, and federal taxation. Ellis earned his B.B.A. degree from the University of Michigan, and his M.B.A from the Harvard Business School. An author of fiction and an avid traveler, Ellis brings an appreciation of the liberal arts' focus on experiential learning and broad educational foundations.

According to Provost for Academic and Student Life Leslie Miller-Bernal, Ellis' vision for the new center aligns with the one developed by the community over the course of its strategic planning process. As the director of center for business and entrepreneurship in the liberal arts, Ellis will be primarily responsible for innovative curriculum development and the melding of the new program with current areas of study. In addition, he'll build the center's programmatic initiatives, forging connections with alumnae and alumni of Wells, widening experiential learning opportunities with local, national, and international businesses, and building new lecture series and co-curricular clubs that benefit Wells and the surrounding communities.

"Liberal arts values are needed now more than ever in the world of business," says Ellis. "Liberal arts are based on reasoning and persuasion, backed up with a strong component of ethics and critical thinking. I am very excited to be working with the Wells Community to combine liberal arts ideals with interactive and experiential business training in finance, investments, accounting, marketing, operations and strategy to help develop the types of business leaders the world needs for a more-balanced future."

Wells unveiled its plan to add a center for business and entrepreneurship in the liberal arts earlier this spring. Wells students can already study business through the College's economics and management major, or through an independent major, but Provost Leslie Miller-Bernal says there is room for the College to make a unique contribution to the field of business study by expanding its offerings. In particular, Wells' new center will incorporate arts administration, non-profit management, green business, and entrepreneurship with general business basics. Additionally, Wells plans to offer students a wealth of hands-on opportunities, both through its deep connection to the local economy, its extensive experiential learning program, and through its own businesses in Aurora Inn, Inc.

"Students who study at the center for business and entrepreneurship will be, first and foremost, graduates of a strong liberal arts curriculum that stresses critical thinking, ethical citizenship, cross-disciplinary exploration, and communication skills," says Miller-Bernal. "We believe that will serve both our graduates, and the business world at large, very well."

June 21, 2010


Karen Frankel Blum to Receive Alumnae Award

Wells College Alumnae Association Presents Award for Contributions to Field of Law

Karen Frankel BlumKaren Frankel Blum, Wells College Class of 1967, will be honored June 5, 2010, by the Wells College Alumnae Association with an Alumnae Award for her contributions to the field of law, especially for her work in the area of Section 1983 civil rights litigation. The Wells College Alumnae Award is conferred annually to a graduate or graduates who have reached a degree of high achievement in their profession or career, in volunteer and community work, in service to their alma mater or a combination of these endeavors.

As a nationally recognized authority on Section 1983, Blum is known as an outstanding scholar and teacher. For the past twenty years, Blum has been an expert on Section 1983 Civil Rights Litigation and Qualified Immunity for the Federal Judicial Center, which provides orientation and continuing education for federal judges. She has often done the orientation classes for new judges and annually leads workshops and seminars for federal district court and federal magistrate judges. She writes materials that are basic resources for the judiciary and is noted for her accuracy and clarity, as well as her willingness to be consulted on specific issues. In 2000, Blum received the Judge John R. Brown Award for Judicial Scholarship and Education.

Since 1974, Blum has served on the faculty of Suffolk University Law School in Boston, Massachusetts, first as Legal Practical Skills Instructor, then Assistant and Associate Professor, before being named Professor of Law in 1982. Blum teaches Civil Procedure, Federal Courts, Civil Rights and Police Misconduct Litigation. She brings not only her extended knowledge of civil rights, police misconduct litigation, and federal courts to her students, but also introduces them to the practical side of the law by incorporating lectures from active lawyers, taking students to the federal court to observe judicial proceedings, and linking students with practicing lawyers to work on actual cases.

Highly regarded for her unbiased view of civil rights law, Blum lectures to lawyers who defend civil rights cases as well as to plaintiffs' lawyers. She does programs for the National Sheriffs' Association and for the Public Agency Training Council, bringing law enforcement agencies up to speed on risks and problems of liability. She has been actively involved with the National Police Accountability Project and served on its Advisory Board since its inception in 1999. NPAP was founded to help end police abuse of authority and provide education and training on police misconduct issues.

In addition, Blum regularly leads and presents at Continuing Legal Education seminars and institutes around the country. She has been involved for many years with the Georgetown Continuing Legal Education Center, Georgetown University Law School, which sponsors a yearly conference on Section 1983 Civil Rights. The conference is now jointly sponsored by Suffolk University Law School. She was named the first Director of the Masterman Institute on the First Amendment and the Fourth Estate at Suffolk University Law School in 2008.

Blum is the author of numerous books and articles relating to Section 1983 issues. She takes pride in the fact that Justice John Paul Stevens cited one of her earliest law review articles approvingly. Police Misconduct: Law and Litigation, written with Michael Avery and David Rudovsky, is now in its 10th edition. Her outlines on An Overview of Section 1983 (800+ pages) and Qualified Immunity (1000+ pages) are fundamental to keeping judges and lawyers aware of the most recent legal developments and litigated issues under Section 1983.

She is affiliated with many professional organizations, including the American Bar Association, Massachusetts Bar Association, Boston Bar Association, American Association for Justice, Association of American Law Schools, American Constitution Society, Legal Committee, ACLU MASS, National Police Accountability Project, National Lawyers' Guild and Women's Bar Association. She was recently appointed to the Massachusetts Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. She has twice (2005 and 2008) been awarded the Yvette C. Mendez Quality of Life Award by the Black Law Students Association at Suffolk. Blum has also been recognized by her peers and received the Charles P. Kindregan Award for Extraordinary Contributions to Advanced Legal Studies at Suffolk Law School in 2004.

After majoring in philosophy at Wells College, Blum taught children with learning disabilities for five years. She and her husband, Jeffrey Blum, attended Suffolk University Law School as evening students. Blum was the first evening student at Suffolk to be named an editor of the Law Review, paving the way for future evening students to be eligible for editorial positions. When she received a J.D. from Suffolk in 1974, Blum was given the Outstanding Student Award for her class. She received an LL.M. from Harvard University Law School in 1976.

Her sons, Harrison and Morgan, were born in 1980 and 1984. Harrison is studying Buddhist Ministry at Harvard Divinity School, and Morgan is a student at Suffolk Law.

April 23, 2010


Wells College Announces Commencement Speaker

Entrepreneur Gwen Webber-McLeod to Offer Keynote Address

Gwen Webber-McLeodWells College President Lisa Marsh Ryerson has announced that Gwen Webber-McLeod, founder and owner of Gwen Webber-McLeod, Inspiring People to New Levels of Leadership, will be keynote speaker at this year's Commencement exercises. Commencement will be held on Saturday, May 29 at 10:00 a.m. Barring inclement weather, the ceremony will take place on the lakeside lawn immediately behind the Aurora Inn.

An entrepreneur who has created two businesses (Treble Associates, and, more recently, Gwen Webber-McLeod, Inspiring People to New Levels of Leadership), Ms. Webber-McLeod has 30 years of experience in leadership development, professional facilitation, and motivational speaking. Throughout her career she has received numerous awards, including the New York State Governor's Award for African-Americans of Distinction, and the New York State Woman of Distinction Award.

Her past professional experience includes positions as director of communications for Wells College; communications/development director of the Seven Lakes Girl Scout Council; executive director of the National Women's Hall of Fame; executive director of the Booker T. Washington Community Center; and coordinator of human services for the Cayuga/Seneca Community Action Agency.

Webber-McLeod also has an active civic life, and she serves as a trustee of numerous organizations that aim to enhance and improve people's lives. Her current affiliations include work as the team advisor to the CNY Health Fellows teams (a project of the Community Health Foundation of Western and Central New York) and membership on the Auburn's YMCA board of directors, as well as service as board chair for Auburn's Booker T. Washington Community Center.

April 29, 2010


Commencement 2010

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

Wells Stagecoach, ReunionThe Wells College Commencement is Saturday, May 29th. This is a truly special weekends for all members of the Wells community. We anticipate a busy and exciting senior week culminating in the commencement ceremonies that will take place Saturday morning at 10 a.m. on the lakeside lawn immediately behind the Aurora Inn.

April 23, 2010


Lisa Marsh Ryerson to Receive Honorary Degree

SUNY-Cortland Will Confer Degree during 2010 Commencement Ceremonies

President Lisa Marsh RyersonWells College President Lisa Marsh Ryerson will receive an honorary degree from State University of New York. Ryerson, who earned a Master of Science in Education from SUNY Cortland in 1991, will address graduates at the 9:30 a.m. undergraduate commencement exercises in Cortland's Park Center Alumni Arena on Saturday, May 22. Fellow alumnus and University of Wyoming President Thomas Buchanan, who received his Bachelor of Science in Recreation Education in 1974, will also receive an honorary degree and will speak at the 2:30 p.m. ceremony on the same day.

An experienced, innovative leader known for her advocacy of gender equity, the liberal arts and commitment to providing increased access to higher education, Ryerson has served as president of Wells College since 1995. The first alumna to become president of Wells College, she is the institution's 17th president and currently the senior college president in the region.

Nationally recognized for her progressive views on higher education and community partnerships, Ryerson speaks and writes about the benefits of inclusive coeducation, gender equality in education and society, women in leadership, and business-education partnerships among many other topics.

She has elevated the college's national standing as a leader in providing an excellent liberal arts education at an affordable price. Ryerson led the board of trustees through a planning and decision-making process that included opening the college's doors to matriculated male students for the first time in the college's history beginning in Fall 2005. She directed Wells' successful transition to coeducation and subsequent 45 percent increase in enrollment.

In February 2010, Ryerson announced the addition of an innovative business center to Wells' liberal arts offerings. This program puts Wells at the forefront of national efforts to revitalize undergraduate business programs by connecting them more fully to the liberal arts.

Ryerson played a key leadership and collaborative role in economically revitalizing the village of Aurora through the restoration and refurbishment of the college's extensive holdings in the village's commercial district. Additionally, she has overseen the construction of Stratton Hall, the college's state-of-the-art science facility. Under her leadership, Wells completed the largest and most successful fundraising effort in its history—a comprehensive campaign that surpassed its ambitious $50 million goal.

An active leader in many national, state and local organizations, Ryerson serves as a commissioner and executive committee member of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education; a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III Management Council; a director of the Metropolitan Development Association (MDA) of Syracuse and Central New York; a director of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra; a member of the Central New York Advisory Board of HSBC Bank; a member of the board of the Northwood School in Lake Placid, N.Y.; a trustee of Auburn Memorial Hospital; and member of the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art Community Advisory Committee at Cornell University.

Ryerson is a past chair of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities of New York State, the Executive Board of the Public Leadership Education Network and the Women's College Coalition in Washington, D.C. She is a vice chair of the Council of Independent Colleges, the American Council on Education's Commission on Leadership and Institutional Effectiveness, and the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.

She has been honored with the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District II Chief Executive Leadership Award; a New York State Senate Woman of Distinction Award; the Girls Inc. of CNY Spirit of American Women National Role Model for Girls Award; the Central New York Chapter of The Public Relations Society of America Communications Advocate Award; a Post-Standard Achievement Award; and a Seven Lakes Girl Scout Council Woman of Distinction Award.

Ryerson, a Jamestown, N.Y. native, is the daughter of Carol and Murray S. Marsh. She resides in Aurora with her husband, George E. Farenthold, and three daughters, Annie, Carol and Julie.

April 13, 2010


Wells College to Host Chicago City Limits

Improvisational Comedy Troupe Will Perform "Wikiphobia"

Chicago City Limits Touring Company

On Wednesday, April 21, Wells College will host a performance by Chicago City Limits. The improvisational comedy troupe has been featured on HBO, Comedy Central, The Today Show and The McLaughlin Group, as well as venues ranging from the Smithsonian Institution to the Super Bowl. Their performance, sponsored by the Wells College Arts and Lecture Series, will be held at 7:30 p.m. in Phipps Auditorium, Macmillan Hall.

The cast of Chicago City Limits will perform "Wikiphobia," a show that takes aim at the many transformations web-based media have wrought in our world—such that "Google" is no longer just a number, "Friend" is no longer just a noun, and virtual, user-generated facts are as good as actual, factual facts. In "Wikiphobia," Chicago City Limits brings its unique style of improv comedy to the biggest stories in the news (and the actual news, too).

This event is open to the Wells community and the public. Tickets are free for students, $5 for members of the Wells community, and $10 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased at the door or by calling the box office at 315-364-3456. Doors open at 7 p.m.

The Wells College Arts & Lecture Series brings a range of artists and intellectuals to campus to perform, to speak on relevant issues, and to represent the disciplines of theatre, music and dance. A committee composed of Wells faculty, staff and students selects groups and individuals annually. Chicago City Limits is the series' fourth and final offering of the academic year.

More information about Chicago City Limits can be found on online at Chicagocitylimits.com.

April 6, 2010


Environmental Activist Lois Gibbs to Speak at Wells

Theme is explored through work by professors and guests

Speaker Lois GibbsOn Monday, April 19, Wells College will host a lecture by Lois Gibbs, founder of the Center for Health, Environment and Justice (CHEJ). Gibbs began CHEJ after winning the nation's first community relocation of 900 families due to a leaking toxic waste dump in Love Canal (Niagara Falls), N.Y. The lecture will be held at 4:30 p.m. in room 209 of Stratton Hall on the Wells College campus.

In 1978, Lois Gibbs founded the Love Canal Homeowners' Association and led a campaign with her neighbors to relocate over 900 families from the contaminated Love Canal community. Her vision has guided CHEJ in providing critical organizing and technical assistance to communities engaged in their own environmental struggles. Gibbs has been recognized extensively for her leadership role in the grassroots environmental justice movement. An inspiring and dynamic speaker, Gibbs has appeared on many television and radio shows including 60 Minutes, 20/20, Oprah Winfrey, Good Morning America, The Morning Show and the Today Show. She is the recipient of an honorary Doctorate from SUNY at Cortland, New York, the 1990 Goldman Environmental Prize, the 1998 Heinz Award, and the 1999 John Gardner Leadership Award from Independent Sector.

Gibbs will discuss how her experiences at Love Canal connect with CHEJ's new PVC-free schools campaign, which encourages schools to ditch PVC (polyvinyl chloride) plastic in favor of safer alternatives. She will also be releasing CHEJ's new student activist toolkit. Accompanying Lois on the tour will be Betty the Be Safe Ducky, an inflatable 25-foot rubber ducky that's been making headlines coast to coast in support of a PVC-free and toxic-free future.

Gibbs' lecture will focus on PVC, which CHEJ calls "the most toxic plastic for our health and environment." Chemicals such as phthalates and dioxins are released by PVC, and are linked to breast cancer, reproductive health problems, asthma, and learning disabilities. Gibbs will also discuss the PVC industry's effects on environmental justice communities in Louisiana, and where PVC may be hiding on campus.

This event is sponsored by Wells College's Social Science Division, the Sociology/ Anthropology major, and the Center for Health, Environment & Justice's "Greening Schools Inside & Out Campaign." More information about Gibbs and CHEJ can be found online at www.chej.org.

April 6, 2010


Journal of Upstate Art and Ideas Featured in Visiting Writers Series

Wells College to Host Reading of "Stone Canoe"

On Wednesday, April 14th at 7:30 p.m., several writers and editors from the 2010 issue of "Stone Canoe" will read in the Art Exhibit Room of Macmillan Hall on the Wells College campus. "Stone Canoe: A Journal of Arts and Ideas from Upstate New York," is an annual magazine published by Syracuse University.

Among the editors who will participate are the current issue's Fiction Editor Jennifer Pashley and Contributing Editor Nancy Keefe Rhodes. Poets will include Bruce Bennett (Wells College), Robert Darling (Keuka College), Austin MacRae, Howard Nelson (Cayuga Community College), and two poets from Alfred University, Juliana Gray and Heather Hallberg Yanda. Harriet Brown and Melissa Johnson will read their nonfiction works, and various readers will read excerpts of fiction. Charles Martin, the poetry editor for the 2010 issue, will be present, as will the journal"s chief editor, Robert Colley.

"Stone Canoe" has received a medal from the Independent Publishers Book Awards and high praise from critics and other writers. "Stone Canoe has carved a rare niche for itself—regional in focus, yet global in scope," offers one critic. Another says, "Stone Canoe is an immensely impressive journal, ambitious, adventurous, and handsomely produced."

The reading is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Professor Bruce Bennett at 315.364.3228, or e-mail brbennett@wells.edu.

April 6, 2010


Art Exhibition Opens at Wells College

Award-winning New York City painter Neil Berger shows Finger Lakes landscapes in the String Room Gallery.

Winter Willows by Neil Berger

The Wells College Visual Arts Department is proud to announce its featured spring exhibition of the 2009-10 academic year, "monotypes and paintings" by Brooklyn-based artist Neil Berger. The paintings and prints will be on display in the String Room Gallery from March 31 through May 9. The exhibit is free and the public is cordially invited to view the show. An opening reception on Wednesday, March 31 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. offers an opportunity to meet the artist; light refreshments will be served.

Most of the exhibition's works feature landscapes, though portraiture and cityscapes are also included. Professor and Gallery Director William Ganis notes, "These are decidedly our views: of mud season, sunrises yielding to cloudy days, transient vernal streams, and a January thaw's patchy snows. These are the spaces of quiet beauty that we all know." Berger once called Ithaca home.

He paints intimate works of oil on canvas, but also makes complementary monotypes. These are created by painting on a piece of Plexiglass that is then run though a printing press so that the image is transferred onto paper. This process yields marks that have a nearly photographic range of tones. The exhibition consists of eleven paintings and eleven monotypes.

Berger's honors include a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship for printmaking (2007); an Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant (2001); a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, for painting (2004); and a Geraldine Dodge Foundation Award (1989). His work has been exhibited at the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC; the Herbert F. Johnson Museum in Ithaca; the Schweinfurth Art Center, Auburn; Washington Square East Galleries in New York City and The Painting Center also in New York City, among many other venues. His solo exhibitions include shows at the Coulter Young Gallery, Peekskill; Main Street Gallery, Dobbs Ferry; Garrison Arts Center, Garrison; Arnot Art Museum, Elmira; the David Sarnoff Research Center, Princeton and Grove Gallery, Aurora.

Winter Willows by Neil Berger

The above piece is titled "Winter Willows," 2007, oil on canvas, 32 x 38 in. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday from 12-5 pm; and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 4 pm. For more information about the exhibit, please see the gallery's website or contact Professor Ganis at 315.364.3465 or wganis@wells.edu.

March 30, 2010


Wells College Students to Spend Spring Break in Service of Poor

Students Will Build in New Orleans with Habitat for Humanity

Over spring break, 10 students from Wells College, along with two volunteers from Wells" staff, will travel to New Orleans to build quality housing for the poor. The students are participants in Collegiate Challenge, a year-round project of Habitat for Humanity. Wells students will volunteer their services the week of March 22-28.

In addition to their work building homes, the students have spent the last several months fundraising in support of Habitat"s housing effort. Since November, they have dedicated their evenings to baking and delivering cookies to their fellow students" dorm rooms. They have also sold mugs and stuffed animals.

"Part of the mission of Wells College is to promote humane action in our students," says Becca Cooper, programming and events coordinator at the College. "Service opportunities like this are an important component of our students" education."

Although 2010 will mark the five-year anniversary of the levee breach that devastated New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, a great deal of rebuilding remains to be done. And while New Orleans remains the most public example of a city in need of decent, affordable housing, Habitat for Humanity"s Collegiate Challenge sends volunteer to some 200 locations between February and April. Collegiate Challenge, which is supported by State Farm, is just one of many youth engagement programs Habitat for Humanity runs for volunteers ranging in age from 5 to 25.

"Students are interested in using their time and talents for more than just partying on the beach, says Tiffany Raymond, president of the Community Service and Activism Board at Wells. "Many of us find service work to be a more engaging and rewarding alternative."

Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 350,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than 1.75 million people. For more information, visit the Habitat for Humanity website

March 15, 2010


Wells College Receives $45,000 Gift from the Hagedorn Fund

Majority of Funds to Support Study of Physiology at Wells

Professor Christina WahlThe Hagedorn Fund recently awarded $45,000 to Wells College. Of this gift, $30,000 was designated to support the purchase of equipment for the physiology laboratory. Additionally, $15,000 towards the College"s annual fund will immediately benefit the College"s daily operations.

Physiology, the study of the function of organisms, is an integral part of the biology curriculum at Wells. Courses promote learning by practice and emphasize hands-on laboratory learning. Understanding physiology is critical for students entering the health professions, and the planned purchase of laptops, treadmills, and equipment kits for measuring oxygen and carbon dioxide in exhaled breath will allow students to investigate the connections between metabolism, diet, and exercise.

"Better, more thorough training in human metabolism is especially important for our students, because currently, over 50% of the American public is overweight. There has also been a serious increase in numbers of individuals with Type 2 diabetes since the 1970s. Both of these chronic health concerns are fundamental problems of diet and metabolism," said Associate Professor of Biology Christina Wahl. "The generous grant from the Hagedorn Foundation also replaces other old, worn-out Physiology teaching equipment that is mismatched and difficult to work with."

The funds awarded by the Hagedorn Foundation will enable Wells to upgrade its laboratory equipment so it is functional, intuitive, and easy to use. This will enable students to learn using the same state-of-the-art equipment found in professional physiology labs, link physiology theory with practical laboratory application, and maximize the utilization of laboratory time, resulting in improved student learning and satisfaction.

The Hagedorn Fund was established in 1953 by William Hagedorn in memory of his late wife, Tillie. William Hagedorn"s daughter Ruth graduated from Wells College in 1930. When William Hagedorn appointed his daughter to assume philanthropic oversight of the Hagedorn Fund, Ruth began a history of annual gifts to Wells. Upon her death, the trustees of the Hagedorn Fund have recognized Ruth"s commitment to Wells by continuing to make yearly gifts to the College.

March 15, 2010


Wells Students Attend Ongoing Onondaga Educational Series

Events, Co-Sponsored by Wells, Examine and Discuss Indigenous Recognition and Rights

Onondaga Land Rights Series

"Brighten the Chain—Treaty Commitments," the opening event of the year-long educational series "Onondaga Land Rights & Our Common Future II," was held at the Syracuse Stage in early February. This event featured a showing of the DVD "Brighten the Chain," along with reflections from Onondaga leaders and friends. Speakers included Jake Edwards, Joe Heath, Sid Hill, Audrey Shenandoah, and Stephanie Waterman.

Onondaga Land Rights SeriesOnondaga Land Rights Series

Onondaga Land Rights SeriesThe second event of the series, titled "From the "Doctrine of Discovery" to International Recognition of Rights" took place at Le Moyne College on March 1. Featured speakers at the event were: Philip P. Arnold, associate professor of indigenous religions in the department of religion at Syracuse University; John Dieffenbacher-Krall, executive director for the intergovernmental Maine Indian Tribal-State Commission; and Tonya Gonella Frichner (Snipe Clan, Onondaga Nation), president and founder of the American Indian Law Alliance in New York City. The program was followed by a reception with refreshments and the opportunity to participate in breakout discussion groups.

Onondaga Land Rights SeriesThe series will continue on April 5 a with talk by Oren Lyons and Roy Simmons II titled "Lacrosse: the Creator's Game." On April 19, the panel discussion "Sacred Waters: Onondaga Lake and Creek," will include speakers Jake Edwards and Henry Lickers. "Sacred Waters II: the Danger of Hydrofracking," featuring Helen Slottje and Denise Waterman, will take place April 26. The Wells community will continue to support the Series by co-sponsoring and by providing van transportation to discussions and presentations. Wells Professor of Psychology and Gender Studies Vic Muñoz is coordinating the transportation, which is open to individuals from the surrounding communities as well as those from Wells.

For more information on the Onondaga Land Rights and Our Common Future II educational series or a full list of events, contact Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation, 315.472.5478, email noon@peacecouncil.net, or visit the Neighbors of the Onondaga Nation website.

March 15, 2010


Visiting Writers Series to Feature Steven Huff

Pushcart Winner, O. Henry Finalist Writes Both Poetry and Prose

Writer Steven HuffPoet and fiction writer Steven Huff will read from his work in the Art Exhibit Room as part of Wells College"s ongoing Visiting Writers Series. The reading will take place at 7 p.m. on March 17. The Visiting Writers Series brings several distinguished writers of poetry, fiction and nonfiction to campus each year.

A Pushcart winner in fiction and an O. Henry Prize finalist, Steven Huff"s poetry has been read by Garrison Keillor on "The Writer"s Almanac" and chosen by former U.S. Poet Laureate Ted Kooser for his national "American Life in Poetry" feature. From 1996 to 2003 he was the executive publisher with BOA Editions, Ltd., one of the nation"s foremost book publishers of poetry and prose by poets.

His most recent books are a collection of stories, "A Pig in Paris" (Big Pencil, 2008) and a collection of poems, "More Daring Escapes" (Red Hen, 2007). His first book of poems was "The Water We Came From" (FootHills, 2003). His stories and poetry have appeared in such journals as "Ploughshares," "Chelsea," and "The Hudson Review."

Huff teaches writing at Rochester Institute of Technology and in the Solstice MFA program in creative writing at Pine Manor College in Boston. He is director of adult education at the Writers & Books literary center in Rochester, N.Y. He lives in Rochester, where is has founded a new publishing company, Tiger Bark Press.

The Visiting Writers Series is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, the Virginia Kent Cummins Writers-in-Residence Fund and the Mildred Walker Fiction-Writer-in-Residence Fund. For more information about the reading, please contact Professor Bruce Bennett at 315.364.3228 or brbennett@wells.edu.

March 9, 2010


Wells Students Present Workshops on the Brain

Two Wells Classes Partner With Southern Cayuga Schools for Brain Awareness Week

Professor Deb GagnonFor the past 15 years, the Dana Foundation, a private, New York-based organization supporting neuroscience research and education, has sponsored Brain Awareness Week. This year Wells College is an official partner in Brain Awareness Week, which aims to inform people about the benefits and progress of brain research. To celebrate the March 15-21 event, Wells professors Brian Duff and Deb Gagnon will help college psychology classes develop workshops for elementary and middle school students in the Southern Cayuga school district.

Professor Brian DuffOn the afternoon of March 16, college students will visit the middle school to present a program titled, "No Way: The Brain Can Do That?" Fifth- and sixth-grade students will rotate among different stations, where they will watch videos and do hands-on activities with the college students to learn about the brain"s remarkable adaptability. Seventh- and eighth-grade students will have the same opportunity later in the day. On the afternoon of March 18, a different college class will visit Emily Howland Elementary School to present a program titled, "Coming to Our Senses." Third- and fourth-graders will visit different interactive stations to learn how the brain interprets "raw data" from the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and skin.

For more information about Wells' involvement in Brain Awareness Week, please contact Associate Professor Deb Gagnon at 315.364.3307 or dgagnon@wells.edu, or Visiting Assistant Professor Brian Duff at 315.364.3211 or bduff@wells.edu.

March 9, 2010


"Personal Mythology" at Wells College

Students Experience a Multifaceted Performance Installation in the String Room Art Gallery

Wells College's second annual performance installation in the String Room Art Gallery, entitled "Personal Mythology," will be on display March 13 and 14. An evening performance will be held on March 13 at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee on March 14 beginning at 2:00 p.m. Admission to the event is free.

"Personal Mythology" is a specialized performance installation that focuses on the multifaceted world of mythology. The installation includes various exhibits that explore what "myth" means to the human race, and features the mysteries and ideologies that drive myth on personal and global levels. The installation also provides a unique opportunity for audience members to interact with the world of myth using different mediums. "Personal Mythology" is a collaboration between Siouxsie Grady, Jeanne Goddard, Joe DeForest and Bobbie Kolpakas, members of the Performing Arts Department at Wells College. Their artistic contributions include 2-D and 3-D art, quilts, collage, theatre and dance.

"I wanted to work with the goddesses of hearth and home and how those images both portray and betray us as women," says Assistant Professor Siouxsie Grady.

Lecturer Bobbie Kolpakas wants to delve deeper into perception and perspective. She explains, "If perception equals reality, then am I who I really think I am? Or am I who you say I am? Is life based on what I show and what you see?"

The performance will feature Wells College students Chelsea Moccia '12, Bev Bauman '10 and Molly Cichy '10, along with other members of the Wells College student body. For more information about "Personal Mythology" please contact Professor Siouxsie Grady at 315.364.3232, by e-mail at sgrady@wells.edu or visit the String Room Gallery's website.

March 9, 2010


Annual Student Art Show Opens at Wells College

Work by more than 50 students on exhibit through March 10

Student Art ShowAn eclectic mix of art is on display in Wells Colleges String Room Gallery from February 10 to March 10, 2010. The artwork was produced by students enrolled in studio art classes during the fall 2009 semester. The annual student art exhibition is free and the public is cordially invited to view the show.

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 student's work in the studios and installed the exhibition.

The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 12 to 5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. For more information about the show at Wells, please contact Professor William Ganis at 315.364.3465 or wganis@wells.edu.

March 9, 2010


Religion and Media Professor Delivers the 2010 Beckman Lecture

R. Gustav Niebuhr, professor and author, visits Wells for lecture and book signing

Gustav NiebuhrR. Gustav Niebuhr is Wells College's 2010 Beckman Lecturer. Niebuhr will open the 2010 Activism Symposium with his talk, "Why Be Tolerant in an Age of Terror," on Thursday, March 11 at 4:45 pm in Phipps Auditorium.

The lecture, which will be followed by a book signing and reception, is sponsored by the Dean of the College as well as Symposium organizers. Niebuhr, associate professor of religion and the media at Syracuse University, has earned a reputation as a leading writer on American religion during a 20-year career in journalism. He has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and the Atlanta Journal/Constitution, and he does occasional commentaries on religion for the National Public Radio program "All Things Considered." His book, Beyond Tolerance: Searching for Interfaith Understanding in America, was published by Viking in 2008.

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."

March 3, 2010


Wells College Presents The String Trio Of New York

Critically Acclaimed Trio Performs Jazz Standards and Original Works

String Trio NYOn Friday, March 5 Wells College will host a performance of the String Trio of New York, a premier American chamber jazz ensemble. The performance, sponsored by the Wells College Arts and Lecture Series, will be held at 8:00 p.m. in Phipps Auditorium of Macmillan Hall on the Wells College campus.

The String Trio of New York is known for expressing warmth and intricacy through a diverse array of compositions, including original works, commissioned pieces, and arrangements of jazz classics by Ellington, Parker, Mingus, Monk, and others. Formed in 1977, the group benefits from its members' long-standing commitment, and has developed a strong reputation for both its technical preparation and its improvisational skill. The String Trio of New York features James Emery on guitar, John Lindberg on upright bass, and Rob Thomas on violin.

This event is open to the Wells community and the public. Tickets are free for students, $5 for members of the Wells community, and $10 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased at the door or by calling the box office at 315-364-3456. Doors open at 7:30 p.m.

More information on the String Trio of New York can be found on the Web at www.s3ny.org. More information on Wells College can be found at www.wells.edu.

The Wells College Arts & Lecture Series brings a range of artists and intellectuals to campus annually to perform, to speak on relevant issues, and to represent the disciplines of theatre, music and dance. A committee composed of Wells faculty, staff and students selects groups and individuals annually.

March 3, 2010


Wells College Announces New Business Program

Wells College is announcing the addition of an innovative new business center to its liberal arts offerings. This program puts Wells at the forefront of national efforts to revitalize undergraduate business programs by connecting them more fully to the liberal arts.

The College will immediately launch a center for the study of business through the liberal arts, which will focus on teaching business in a manner that stresses interdisciplinary and experiential learning, in keeping with Wells core curriculum. The College is charging the new center to build signature programs in areas of business that best leverage Wells distinctive values and strengths, including arts administration; non-profit business; green business; entrepreneurship; and hospitality. 

Through individualized majors overseen by the new center, students can begin studying business as early as next fall, says Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College Leslie Miller-Bernal. Wells plans to begin a search this spring for a director for the center.

For more information, contact Ann Rollo, vice president for communications and college relations, at 315. 364. 3407 or arollo@wells.edu.

February, 2010


Author, Educator Gregory Michie To Speak At Wells

Talk Explores Innovative Responses to Accountability-Driven Requirements

Gregory Michie, author of "Holler if You Hear Me: The Education of a Teacher and His Students," will deliver the talk "Another Path is Possible." The talk, sponsored by the Wells College Education Program and the Social Sciences Division and Cazenovia College, will take place Friday, Feb. 26, 5:00 p.m. in the Chapel of Main. This event is free and open to the public. Michie will answer questions after his talk.

Michie draws upon his experiences as a classroom teacher and teacher educator to examine some ways that the focus on high-stakes accountability has narrowed the vision in many public schools—particularly in big cities like Chicago—and how kids are being shortchanged as a result. He also tells stories of teachers and principals in Chicago who are doing things differently despite the pressures of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

Currently Associate Professor of Curriculum & Instruction at Illinois State University, Michie taught for nine years in Chicago public schools before joining Illinois State. His experiences there were the basis for his well-reviewed 1999 book, "Holler if You Hear Me," now in its second edition. Michie emphasizes teachers getting to know their students, their school's surrounding community, and their students' cultural backgrounds.

Michie spends most of his time in Chicago's Little Village, a predominantly Hispanic area of the city, where he has helped Illinois State develop a branch of its Professional Development School (PDS) program.

For more information, contact Bryan Duff, Visiting Assistant Professor of Education at 315-364-3342 or bduff@wells.edu.