August 20, 2008

 
Volume 2, issue 50
August 20, 2008
The Fountain

WCTS put to the test following power failure
Transformer instalaltion
The WCTS staff worked very hard, but a crane had to do the heavy lifting of the new transformer for Olin Hall.

What does a college do when a transformer blows, wreaking havoc and shutting down campus e-mail, the Internet and the phone system? Whatever it takes, as evidenced by the WCTS team. From stringing together extension cords from the Hall of Science to Olin to staying up all night guarding equipment in the computer center because the external doors had to be left open, the team left no stone unturned. “I am so proud of and grateful to the staff,” says Keiko Pitter, chief technology officer. “Kevin Kelly, Mike Hubbard, Roger Morales, Ian Quorn, Rick Fletcher and Jerry Clifton in particular really had to sweat it out. WCTS thanks the campus community for your patience and understanding.”


Staff breakfast Tuesday, Aug. 26

breakfast

It wouldn’t be the (almost) start of a new school year without the traditional Staff Breakfast, set for Tuesday, Aug. 26, at 8:30 a.m. in the Reid Campus Center, Young Ballroom. On the menu — in addition to a feast — will be a welcome by President Bridges, introductions of new staff by budget officers, and other updates.


WISE offers taste of college life to local middle schoolers

Nineteen 8th and 9th graders from Walla Walla, Milton-Freewater, and College Place converged on the Whitman campus Aug. 10-12 for a taste of college life at the third annual Whitman Institute for Summer Enrichment (WISE) program.

WISE, the college’s outreach program to local least-advantaged and first-generation middle school students, aims to introduce participants to college life in a way that will generate excitement about pursuing a college education and belief in it as a possibility, said Andrés Dankel-Ibáñez, assistant director of the Intercultural Center. The students, who live on campus for their three-day stay, took classes this summer from professors Laura Schueller, U.J. Sofia, Julie Charlip and Juli Dunn and attended workshops taught by admission staff members Kevin Dyerly, Anne Thatcher, Victoria Lidzbarski and Devin Yamanaka. Parents were also offered workshops on issues ranging from academic choices in middle school to the admission and financial aid processes for college.

At the dinner finale, said Sonja Aikens, administrative assistant, Intercultural Center, President Bridges gave each student a certificate of accomplishment and the students showed their parents the art projects they had completed. “We had eight Whitman student assistants and they were all fantastic — they really connected to the kids,” said Aikens.

“The WISE program truly demonstrates a top-down commitment from Whitman College to give back to the Walla Walla community,” said Dankel-Ibáñez, adding that many offices and departments support the program. “Improving access to post-secondary education opportunities for society’s least-advantaged young people is arguably the most urgent and pressing social justice issue that we face domestically,” he said. “President Bridges recognizes the value of creating opportunities for Whitman community members to mentor local young people and their families, opening up to them the possibilities a liberal arts education can offer.”


Proud staff mom sees Whitman student daughter elected

Jazmin López ’10, daughter of custodial staff member Ema López, was elected undergraduate representative for Mujeres Activas, en Letras y Cambio Social (MALCS) — a national academic organization on Chicana Studies — at its August Summer Institute Conference held at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City.

Lopez Ema and Jazmin López

“I’m so proud of Jazmin,” said Ema López. “My daughters are my life, and when I heard about this, I was very happy and excited.” Although it has always been her dream and her intention to send her daughters to college, she said, she didn’t think she would find a place like Whitman, where everyone is so supportive. Lopez said she wanted to especially thank President Bridges for his generosity and professor and Spanish adviser Nohemy Solórzano-Thompson, who has been like “Jazmin’s second mother,” always there to help.

“Jazmin is one of the brightest students I have ever had the pleasure of working with,” said Solórzano-Thompson, assistant professor of Spanish. “Her academic work exhibits great academic promise. I predict she will be one of the intellectual leaders in the field of Chicana/o Studies in the near future.”

Generous funding from the offices of the president, the provost and the dean of students will allow Jazmin to travel to professional conferences and meet the responsibilities of her new position, added Solórzano-Thompson.

The MLACS is a professional scholarly organization officially founded at UC Davis in 1982. It is composed of more than 200 academics, graduate and undergraduate students specializing in Chicana Studies. López will serve as representative-elect during 2008–2009 and then assume the main representative position for 2009–2010.


Correction with apologies

Elena Mitchell ’10 was inadvertently left off the list of artists who created “Entwined,” the Whitman parent-sponsored sculpture that is part of the Sweet Onions on Parade exhibit in downtown Walla Walla. And Elsbeth Otto ’09 was mistakenly identified as Elizabeth Otto. Our apologies; everyone involved did a beautiful job.


Harper Joy Theatre’s 2008-09 season begins Sept. 11 with special show

breakfast

The 2008-2009 Harper Joy Theatre season promises to be as eclectic as ever, beginning with a special bonus performance Sept. 11-14 of the one-woman show “My Name is Rachel Corrie” on the Freimann Stage. Season ticket holders will have first opportunity to reserve seats for one of this show’s only four performances, said Nancy Simon, Garrett Professor of Dramatic Art.

The regular season begins Sept. 27-28 with a new twist, courtesy of Christopher Petit, assistant professor of theatre. “The Instant Play Festival!” will present seven instant plays each evening. After three weeks of workshops with professional playwrights, students will receive a theme in the evening and write a play for rehearsal the following afternoon and performance that night.

The season continues with presentations of “Our Town” by Thornton Wilder Oct. 23-26; “Perfect Pie” by Judith Thompson Nov. 12-16; “The Shadow” by Yevgheny Shvarts Dec. 11-14; The Annual Student One-Act Play Contest Feb. 11-15; “Moonlight on the Avenue of Faith,” adapted from Gina B. Nahai’s novel by Cynthia Croot, assistance professor of theatre, March 5-8; “Medea’s Children” by Per Lysander and Suzanne Osten April 8-12; and “She Loves Me,” book by Joe Masteroff, music by Jerry Bock, and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, May 7-10, 21 and 22.


Root beer floats — cold treat on a hot day
Root beer floats
Marge Jessee, post office supervisor and Rachna Sinnott ’93, director of foundation and corporate relations, are among those enjoying the root beer floats.

On Friday afternoon, the weather was hot (100-plus even in the shade of Baker Faculty Center) but the refreshments and repartee were cool at the staff Root Beer Float Social. President George Bridges scooped the ice cream and his officemates Jed Schwendiman ’92, Jennifer Casper and Maggi Banderas ’05 poured root beer in cups for this popular first-time event. One staff member voiced what many were saying: “What a fun idea! I haven’t had a root beer float in years!”


Save the date(s)
All free unless otherwise stated

Friday, Aug. 29
Convocation: The College welcomes new students and their parents with a traditional Convocation program, which includes faculty in academic regalia, musical selections, a welcome by President Bridges, and the address by Patrick Spencer, professor of geology. 10 a.m., Cordiner Hall.

Tuesday, Sept. 2
Job Fair: Experience Expo Fair, sponsored by the Career Center and the Center for Community Service, will provide an opportunity for offices in need of student employees and students in need of jobs to meet. 4 to 5 p.m., Reid Campus Center. Deadline for campus offices to register and reserve table space is Tuesday, Aug. 26. Contact Margaret Ely at x5183 or elymr@whitman.edu to register.


Whitman College
In This Issue
Power Failure
Staff Breakfast
WISE Program
Staff Daughter Elected
Correction
HJT 2008-2009 Season
Root Beer Floats
Save the Date(s)

Past issues

The Fountain is published by the Office of Communications. Send news to Editor Lenel Parish at thefountain@whitman.edu. Photos are accepted. Submissions are due by Tuesday at 5 p.m. for the following week's issue. Director of Communications: Ruth Wardwell. Online: www.whitman.edu/fountain