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Betsy Chapman

Thursday Roundup

We’re coming close to the end of the week, and it’s going to be a cold (and rainy) one this weekend.  High of 47 predicted?  Enjoy the nice days today and tomorrow while you still can.

Project Pumpkin was yesterday, and the News Service has a great recap of it here.  I did not make it up to the Quad to see it (though I did peek on the Quad Cam when I could).

I didn’t make it to Project Pumpkin because I have been in the middle of academic advising for my group of 20 freshmen and sophomores (as have the other lower division advisers on campus).  From chatting with some of my other adviser friends, it seems like there are some common stress points and themes:  Accounting 111 seems to be on the top of many hopeful business majors’ minds; worrying about ‘do I have time to take all my basics and divisionals? (short answer – YES! you can do those plus electives and most finish before end of sophomore spring); angst about not knowing a major yet (that’s OK – we want students to have time to think and explore); and ‘what do I do with a major in X?’

That last question is a timely one, because we have a new story on the WFU home page “What Can I Do with an English Major?”  This is near and dear to me as an English major myself.  My answer when asked this is “what CAN’T you do with an English major?” – but your students should read the story and learn more.

In other news, an email recently went out to students from Residence Life and Housing about spring room changes and students returning from studying abroad this semester.  You can read the full email here, but this one section might be of particular interest to parents of juniors who are abroad:  “If you are returning from abroad and are not being pulled in by someone, living in a Theme or Greek Block, or petitioning to live off-campus, you will select housing online the week of December 15th.  If you wish to petition to live off campus when you return from abroad – whether for a medical reason or any other reason (including simply preference to live off campus) – you must fill out this form to be considered:”  Petitions should be submitted by Monday, November 3rd at 5 pm.

Finally, a reminder about your sartorial choices for tomorrow.  Every Friday is Black and Gold Friday in the Daily Deacdom – so please bring out your best WFU apparel, or just wear black and/or gold to show your support for WFU from wherever you are.


– by Betsy Chapman

Deliberative Dialogue Exercise Monday 11/3

This coming Monday at 7:30 pm in Wait Chapel, we will be hosting a Deliberative Dialogue about “What does it mean to live in community?”  This is a chance for all members of our community – students, faculty, and staff – to come together to discuss and reflect on the issue of living in community.

For those not familiar with the concept of Deliberative Dialogue, the event website describes it as follows: “A public discussion format for a group to work through a challenge that faces them. When possible, there is a short, central text that lays out various ways in which people understand the problem but stops short of adopting a position. Rather than “sounding off” with derision and name-calling or deferring solely to expert opinion, participants discuss together personal experiences with the issue; what they regard as valuable concerning the issue; pros and cons of available options; and the costs and consequences of possible actions. Though it is unrealistic to expect that all participants will agree at the conclusion, the hope is that the deliberation will yield common ground for action and a better understanding of people who hold a different perspective from our own.”

An important part of the Deliberative Dialogue is the reading of the Issue Guide, which describes the basis of the discussion.  There is some background information about previous Deliberative Dialogues and their results, and then the Issue Guide offers three different potential perspectives or solutions to help inform issues.

Here is a snippet from the Issue Guide explaining more: “The purpose of this issue guide, and the deliberation scheduled for November 3, 2014, is to offer some ways of thinking about these issues and to identify action steps for change. What does it mean to be a member of a community? What does it mean for all of us when some members of our community feel marginalized? How should we proceed together? The three perspectives that are offered here are based on interviews with a cross-section of students, faculty, and administrators, and a review of various campus documents, surveys, and studies that have been done in recent years. Each proposes a way of thinking about the challenges we face as a campus community and possible approaches to becoming a more inclusive community. These perspectives are not mutually exclusive; you may support elements from all of the proposed ways forward. Somewhere among these three perspectives you should be able to find something that connects to your own experience and aspirations for Wake Forest.”

Your students should strongly consider attending this event.  This is their home for 10 months of the year and we hope they have a vested interest in this community and making it the best it can be.  Students and campus community members can register for this event online here (preregistration is required so we can have an accurate account of attendees).

This will be a great way to hear lots of different campus perspectives, discuss possible options, and meet new people in the process.  Take advantage of it, Deacs.


- by Betsy Chapman

Upcoming Events

There are a few events coming up this week that might be of interest to your students:

Maurizio Barboro, piano – Guest Artist Recital - Tuesday, October 28 at 7:30 pm in Scales Fine Arts Center, Brendle Recital Hall.  World renowned Italian pianist Maurizio Barboro to perform at Wake Forest. Performance will include masterpieces from the music repertory of composers: Schumann, Chopin, Debussy, Liszt. 

Project Pumpkin – Wednesday, October 29 at 3 pm on the Quad.  Project Pumpkin, an event sponsored by the Volunteer Service Corps, is an annual service event at Wake Forest University that was started in 1988 to bring together the campus and Winston-Salem communities.  Each year more than 1,000 children from local agencies are escorted to the Reynolda campus where students and faculty combine to provide a safe environment for trick-or-treating, carnival games, clowns, and entertainment.

The LGBTQ Community Forum – Thursday, October 30th from 4-6 pm in Annenberg Forum, Carswell Hall.  Hosted by the President’s Commission on LGBTQ Affairs, this event is an opportunity for students, faculty, and staff at Wake Forest to share their experiences as LGBTQ people or allies. Members of the President’s Commission on LGBTQ Affairs will be on hand to listen to feedback and gain a richer understanding of the climate for LGBTQ individuals on campus. Commission chair and Vice President for Campus Life Penny Rue will moderate the event. All community members, including straight allies, are welcome to attend. The forum will be followed by a reception with Commission members.

Frightfest: Haunted Barn - Thursday, October 30 from 8:00 pm to 12:00 am at The Barn.  Get your scares in early the night before Halloween. Food, haunted trails, and scary movies await you at the Haunted Barn.

Midnight-20th Annual Halloween Orchestra Concert- Friday, October 31 at 11:59 pm, Scales Fine Arts Center, Brendle Recital Hall.  David Hagy, conductor.  New freshmen and returning upper-classmen will find new forays into flights of fearful and fateful fancy that will haunt the entire Halloween audience. Faculty will plan a plot the students know nothing about while students prepare tricks the faculty know nothing about, all while performing haunting, comedic, and triumphant music. It is rumored that time-travel will be a part of this year’s plot! Come join in the hijinks!

As always, this is by no means an exhaustive list – just a smattering of things to come.  Your students should check out the Events Calendar to see all the activities (lectures, athletics, volunteer activities, spiritual, Student Union and more) that take place each week.



– by Betsy Chapman

Hope It Was Fun for You

Family Weekend is over, sadly.  It was wonderful to see so many smiling faces, families hugging their Deacs hello, and people walking in the beautiful sunshine and enjoying the breathtaking fall leaves on display.  From the Daily Deac’s vantage point at least, everyone seemed happy.  Hope that Family Weekend was as fun for you as it was for your Deacs.

My colleagues at Student Union – both administrators and student volunteers alike – have to be tired today.  They did so many things to make the weekend come together seamlessly.  Many of those things you might have seen as you checked in to Benson, but a lot of them you may never know about.  So a great big THANK YOU to everyone who helped make the weekend happen.

The weather could not have been better in my opinion.  Not too hot, not too cold, sunny and glorious.  And while we didn’t end up beating Boston College, we sure did make it an interesting game until almost the last minute.  Our Deacs are young, but there is talent there and I have great hope for the future.

For those of you who stayed at the game until the bitter end, you would have seen a really beautiful golden sunset, topped off with just a sliver of a crescent moon.  Picture perfect.

Deac families, thank you to all those who were able to make the trip and give your students some much-needed post-midterms TLC (and a couple of nice dinners out, no doubt).  For those who couldn’t make it, you were with us in spirit.  On a personal note, my profound appreciation for all the Daily Deac readers who took the time to speak to me and tell me you enjoy the Daily Deac.  It was a joy to be able to put faces to names and I thank you for your kind words.  Connecting you to your students’ WFU experiences is a highlight of my day every day.  Thank you.


– by Betsy Chapman

Happy Family Weekend!

fam weekend group shot 2 20091030family9670 20091030family5049Welcome to campus, Deac families!  We are delighted to have you here this weekend and hope you have a wonderful time with your students.

Student Union has put a lot of time and effort into planning fun events for you to enjoy, so if you see any of their staff or their student volunteers, give them a big ‘thank you’ for all their hard work!

Bring out your best black and gold clothes for the weekend and cheer hard at the football game.





- by Betsy Chapman

Parents’ Toolkit: Deacon Development 101

Some of the upperclassmen parents may recall that last fall we rolled out an online class (MOOC – Massive Open Online Course) for Wake Forest parents and families.  The ZSR Library was a critical partner in getting the course materials aligned and organized into a weekly, self-paced online class, and the other critical partner was the many campus offices who helped provide content.

Rather than run this program as another MOOC/online class that only lasted a month or so, we thought it might be more helpful to our parents and families to have this information available at any time.  So we have migrated a lot of the most useful and relevant course content into what we are calling the Parents’ Toolkit.

The Parents’ Toolkit delves into college students’ development across the following areas: academics, wellbeing, and identity.  The articles, videos and resources in there might help inform and illustrate ways your student might grow and change across these dimensions.  We close with a video lecture from our Provost, Rogan Kersh (’86) about Gen Y or the Millennials – your students.  He is a research expert on generational studies and has some fascinating insights on today’s students (and how they differered from Gen X or the Baby Boomers).

Within each portion of the toolkit, you’ll see links to articles that might be of interest.  There’s also a section about offices on campus that support our students in this part of their WFU life.  Couple of disclaimers: the videos were originally shot to be part of a course, so you’ll hear references to ‘the course’ etc.  Just gloss over that and focus on the content of the videos.  Other disclaimer: from the time the videos were made, a couple of the offices have been renamed. so names and titles of the people you see might be different.  The main thrust of their remarks are still relevant though.

So if you want to dig in to the Parents’ Toolkit, we invite you to take a little nibble or a big bite.  As I often say, Wake Forest is a smorgasboard – taste as much as you like, but the more you dig in, the richer the experience will be.

The Parents’ Toolkit is accessible at this link, and also in the menu on the left hand side of any of the Parents’ Page or subpages.  Enjoy!



- by Betsy Chapman

To Get You Ready For Fall’s Beauty

We are getting excited about having 1,000+ families here for Family Weekend.  To give you a taste of the beauty of Wake Forest in the fall, here’s a few shots from our University Photographer, Ken Bennett.

- by Betsy Chapman

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Top 10 Things to Do While Your Deac is Sleeping In on Family Weekend

For all our parents and families coming to campus for Family Weekend, you might discover that your idea of an ‘early morning’ is vastly different than your student’s.  So for any of our Deac families who have some time to kill in the morning while your students are still abed, here’s a Top 10 Things to Do While Your Deac is Sleeping In.

[in no particular order]

1. Go up to Farrell Hall and tour the building.  You’ll be amazed at the vast, open, welcoming Living Room – but you can also go upstairs and peek at the various classrooms.

2. Visit the ZSR Starbucks or Campus Grounds to get that morning cup of coffee.

3. Take said coffee and drink it in the rocking chairs on the Mag Patio, just outside of the Green Room of Reynolda Hall.

4.  Go in the Green Room of Reynolda Hall and look at some of the University Art Collection’s works.  There are brochures in the room to tell you what you are seeing.

5. Continuing the art theme, walk through the 3rd and 4th floors of Benson Center and look at the artworks collected there from past student buying trips.

6. Wander up to Davis Chapel (which is on the back side of Wait Chapel facing big parking lot Q) and go inside.  The chapel has been recently renovated to be more of a multi-denominational space and it is beautiful.

7. If you’re feeling especially funloving, head down towards Scales Fine Arts Center and sit on the swings hanging from the nearby trees.  Swinging is great fun.

8.  Explore some of the academic buildings.  Your students taking artistic type classes?  Go into Scales.  Humanities classes?  Go into Tribble or Carswell.  Romance languages or psychology?  Go into Greene.  Science classes? Winston, Salem, or Olin’s your place.

perioidc table spirit walk9. Speaking of Salem, visit the periodic table bench that was a student art project.  It’s a picnic table with ceramic tiles in the shape of the periodic table.  And a nice place to sit outside.

10. Go to the Spirit Walk between Tribble and Benson and look at all the bricks that have been purchased in years past by and for our students.  See which bricks you like the most.

And this is a gentle reminder for something to think about before you come to campus.  Particularly if you are the parent of a first-year student, consider talking to your student about whether there are people on his/her hall whose families can’t come for Family Weekend, and include that student in your plans.  Some of our families live at a great distance, others may have younger siblings at home or work commitments that they can’t leave.  To help make everyone’s Family Weekend a good one, think about leaving no man (or woman) behind when you are planning group meals, tailgating, etc.    Imagine how you would feel if the shoe was on the other foot and you couldn’t attend.  And offer a kindness to another student if you can.


- by Betsy Chapman


Pumpkin Painting Contest

It’s going to be a bit of a light week at the Daily Deac because everyone is in mad rush prep for all the events associated with Family Weekend.

Here’s something your students might want to do – and it’s a quick turnaround, deadline tomorrow!  Sent to us by our friends at the Volunteer Service Corps.



DATE: Tuesday, October 21st

TIME: 5-7 PM

LOCATION: Manchester Plaza aka Mag Quad/Lower Quad

COST: $10 per team (ie: $2 per person for a 5-person team!)

*Cash can be brought to the event*

Here is the link to sign up:  Please get a group of friends together to benefit a wonderful cause!  Details about what will happen to the decorated pumpkins, as well as information about a prize for the winners, can be found by following that link.  If you have any questions, please email Victoria Lawton directly at


- by Betsy Chapman

Fall Break Friday

Happy Fall Break, Deac families!  It’s a beautiful, cool, sunny fall day here on campus.  If your students are here, they were not out and about in the 8-10 am timeframe when I was making my way around campus.

As often happens when class is not in session, there are some maintenance type activities going on around campus.  Across the street on Polo Road near the sophomore parking lot, a crew is taking down some big trees (not quite sure why).   It had a crew full of folks and it looked like a pretty big tree they were wrangling.

Yesterday I heard about an opportunity for members of our campus community to recognize their peers and colleagues for a great honor.  Details are below.  If your student knows someone who would be a worthy recipient, please encourage him/her to nominate that person.


Wake Forest University and Winston-Salem University 2015 Building the Dream Award Nomination   

Each year brings the opportunity to celebrate the life and legacy of one of America’s most inspirational individuals, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Unfortunately, some Americans only reflect on Dr. King’s accomplishments one day per year.  We are honored to acknowledge those whose life builds upon his dream. 

Each year, representatives from Wake Forest and Winston Salem State Universities form a joint Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. programming committee.  Annually, we award the “Building the Dream” award to one professor or administrator and one student from each respective university.  This award will be given to a person who embodies the qualities Dr. King epitomized and actively exercises these qualities in his or her community (on and off campus).  You can read about last year’s winners here. This year’s award will be announced at the ceremonial banquet in January at Wake Forest University. 

If you know someone who would be a great candidate for the “Building the Dream” award, please complete the brief nomination form. Please have all nominations submitted by Tuesday, November 18th.   

We look forward to learning about your nominee! 


The 2015 WFU/WSSU MLK Jr. Planning Committee


- by Betsy Chapman