Site Content

The Daily Deac

Worrell Discoveries

A Wake Forest student walks past the new Health and Exercise Science addition to Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, February 23, 2016. The addition has research labs and classrooms.

A Wake Forest student walks past the new Health and Exercise Science addition to Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, February 23, 2016. The addition has research labs and classrooms.

The long-awaited addition to Worrell Professional Center (WPC) is now completed, so our department of Health and Exercise Science has moved in there. I have seen students and faculty coming and going so I decided to take a little walkabout.  (True confession: mostly I got lost. I took a flight of stairs that I thought would lead to the second floor and a hallway, and turns out it goes straight into a classroom!  Thankfully, the door was propped open so I could see and hear inside, and I managed to spot a row of students and beat a hasty retreat).  The building addition is really nice. Lots of glass, lots of natural light in the entrance.

The real find for me was in another part of the building, though.

Wake Forest law student Jordan Lee ('JD '16) studies before class in the law commons in Worrell Professional Center on Wednesday, October 28, 2015.

Wake Forest law student Jordan Lee (‘JD ’16) studies before class in the law commons in Worrell Professional Center on Wednesday, October 28, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Wake Forest School of Law students work in the new Law Commons in the Worrell Professional Center on Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

The WPC is home to our law school, and it recently had a facelift in the Law Commons area.  This is sort of the companion piece to the Farrell Hall Living Room – a large, open concept greatroom with lots of seating (tables and chairs, as well as armchairs), there is even a gas log fireplace.  It’s sleek and pretty and would be a fine spot for anyone to study.  Presumably most of the folks there are law students, but in theory anyone could go.

I had heard rumors of a dining venue in the Law Commons, and so I stopped by to check it out.  It is a Boars Head place that makes paninis and soups and has a couple of pastry options, as well as sodas, chips, etc.  I’ve been there twice for lunch.  Once was over the top superlative – a caprese panini (mozzarella, tomatoes, pesto, basil) that was warm and delicious.  The second time around the ingredients were a little wet, but still good.  If your Deacs are tiring of their usual dining places, the should check this out.

2 29 16 law commons 6Several good and proper pics of the Law Commons area by our great Ken Bennett, and then a hastily-snapped one by me of the front of the dining area.

PS – the weather today is STUNNING. I hope your Deacs get outside to enjoy it.  Maybe 68 and sunny with a light breeze. Hard to get better than that.

— by Betsy Chapman

Not Quite a Five Senses

Happy Friday, Deac families.  I happened to spend some time in an office that I don’t usually frequent, and at the time I did not sit there and do a proper Five Senses kind of post, but let me share some impressions with you.

My perch was the comfy sofas in the lobby of the OPCD – Office of Personal and Career Development – and I was there for a couple of hours.  The OPCD, if your students have not discovered it, is the place where they can go to have resume reviews, mock interviews, career counseling, various types of testing (such as the Myers Briggs) and more.  This is a stock photo of a past student, but the view was the same.

Wake Forest junior Connor Godfrey ('14) poses for a photo in the Office of Personal and Career Development on Thursday, June 21, 2012.

Wake Forest junior Connor Godfrey (’14) poses for a photo in the Office of Personal and Career Development on Thursday, June 21, 2012.

While I was here, there were many students who came in for the open resume review appointments.  Students come here and check in, and then a career counselor comes out to the lobby and calls the student’s name, then they go back (presumably to an office or a cube) for the counselor to review the resume, offer constructive feedback, etc.

One student came here for a testing appointment. I want to give a big shout out to the student who was working at the OPCD reception desk (a student worker?) There had been a snafu in the appointment and our worker was as polite and customer-service oriented as ever I have seen. The student worker managed to get the student a reschedule of the testing – and for all that it had to have been frustrating to be rescheduled, our guy handled it like an old pro.  I was really proud of this student’s professionalism.  He also thanked everyone as they were leaving. Really great customer service.

I saw a young lady come for a mock interview. Her career counselor spent a good amount of time with her, probably 30 minutes or more. When they finished, she came out here to fill out what looked like a Mock Interview Evaluation form.  I assume that feedback will be helpful to the interviewer for future sessions, but it’s also nice for the young lady to get a chance to reflect on the experience right after it happened, while it is fresh in her mind.

In the sofa area where I was sitting, students would come and go. A couple of guy friends were having a casual conversation with each other about resumes, interview techniques and more.  They were sharing strategies about where they might apply for internships, brainstormed together, etc.  This space is set up to encourage that kind of friendly collegiality – nice colors, good artwork, flexible seating arrangements. They got it right when they built this area.

Students can come to the OPCD at any point in their WFU career.  My argument would be the earlier you get in the pipeline, the more time you’ll have to access the incredible array of support the OPCD can offer.

— by Betsy Chapman

Meet a Deac – Hu Womack (’90, MBA ’00)

There are so many great people at Wake Forest – some with names and faces that are very public, others that you might not know but who may have a profound impact on your students.  Our Meet a Deac series – I hope – will introduce you to some of the incredible folks on this campus who make a meaningful difference.

Wake Forest Z. Smith Reynolds Library staff portraits, in the library on Wednesday, July 15, 2015. Hu Womack.

Today we are featuring my good friend Hu Womack (’90, MBA ’00), Instruction and Outreach Librarian at the Z. Smith Reynolds Library. He’s one of the most active, engaged, and supportive people I know. And hands down, he has the greatest socks of anyone on campus 🙂

———————–

Wake Forest students play Humans versus Zombies in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library on Friday, February 7, 2014.

Wake Forest students play Humans versus Zombies in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library on Friday, February 7, 2014.

Your official job title is Instruction and Outreach Librarian at the Z. Smith Reynolds Library. In laymen’s terms, what do you do at WFU?
The mission of the ZSR Library is to help our students, faculty and staff succeed. My role focuses on teaching our students how to conduct scholarly research and promoting the Library through various outreach projects.  I teach LIB 210, Social Sciences Research Sources and Strategies, each semester, and occasionally teach a LIB 100 course, an information literacy course that helps primarily freshmen and sophomores learn how to locate information and also evaluate its credibility (particularly if it is a web site source). I also lead our spectacular Humans v Zombies outreach events!

How long have you worked at WFU, and in what capacity?
I came to WFU as a freshman in the Fall of 1985. I worked for the Art Department and the Art Gallery during my undergraduate years and from 1991 to 1994 I worked in what was then called the “Art Slide Library” (it’s the Visual Resources Center now). Since 1994 I’ve been a full-time employee of ZSR, and I’ve been a Reference Librarian at ZSR since 2008.

How does your work impact WFU parents and families?
I’m also a faculty adviser, so at any given time I have 10 freshmen and 10 sophomores I advise. I hope that as their adviser I can continue giving students the same good counsel they get from their parents. Sometimes I’m lucky enough to meet the parents of my advisees. I enjoy telling parents all the great things I see their kids doing at WFU, volunteering, taking leadership roles in student organizations. It’s very rewarding.

You are an alumnus – a “Double Deac” with two degrees.  In what years did you graduate and what was your major?
I graduated in 1990 with a BA in English and Studio Art and received my MBA in 2000. My MLIS is from another school down the road. I had great mentors at Wake Forest who helped me both before and after I graduated.

20130919scales9180What are some of your favorite memories as a student?
Late nights working on art projects in the Scales Fine Arts Center, and taking breaks to go outside and look up at the stars from Davis Field.

What do you see in today’s students that is different from when you were a student on campus?
I wish I had the focus and direction I see in these students. I’ve been very lucky in my career and found the perfect place for me. Students today make their own luck with their outstanding academic performance and their engagement in scholarship and the community.

What advice would you give to today’s students? I have three quotes to share.

“Comparison Is the Thief of Joy” – Theodore Roosevelt. [SO true. You use this a lot, and every time I see it, I am reminded of its wisdom. Thanks for keeping that on my radar.]

“Diversity Is Being Invited to the Party; Inclusion Is Being Asked to Dance.” – Verna Myers

“Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on you.” – Satchel Paige

What is the best part about working at Wake Forest?
The people. The students, faculty and staff at Wake Forest are amazing. We are a community. We care about each other, we look out for each other and we bring out the best in each other.

And now, the just-for-fun questions:

Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates speaks at Wake Forest University as part of the Voices of Our Time series in Wait Chapel on Tuesday, November 17, 2015.

Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates speaks at Wake Forest University as part of the Voices of Our Time series in Wait Chapel on Tuesday, November 17, 2015.

Book you’re reading now/last read: I have to list three, Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee, Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi, and Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates, who recently spoke at Wake Forest and had everyone in Wait Chapel on the edge of our seats! [I’m in the middle of that one too. A deeply painful read, but an important one in my opinion.]

taylor-swift-1989-tour-bench-2015-billboard-650 (1)What music are you listening to these days: Taylor Swift, (I even went to hear her in concert last Fall!) Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Panic! At the Disco. And to be honest. I listen to a lot of NPR news and old disco from the 1970s. 

THE SIMPSONS: The Simpson Family. THE SIMPSONS ™ and © 2013 TCFFC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

THE SIMPSONS: The Simpson Family. THE SIMPSONS ™ and © 2013 TCFFC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Favorite TV show: I can’t list just one! I still love animation, The Simpsons, Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, and cable series like Nurse Jackie and Episodes and dramas like Empire. I watch a lot of television, but I watch it all on computer screens and tablets these days. I rarely turn on the TV! 

Website you frequent: reddit (when I need a break I check out the “aww” section, and when I want to learn, I check out the “TIL” section (Today I Learned) on the weekends I binge on the “DIY” section! 

Guilty pleasure: binge-watching content on Netflix, Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime! 

The garden and seating area between North Dining Hall and Magnolia Residence is a pleasant place to be on a cool summer morning, Thursday, August 7, 2014.

The garden and seating area between North Dining Hall and Magnolia Residence is a pleasant place to be on a cool summer morning, Thursday, August 7, 2014.

Favorite dining location on campus and what you frequently eat there: North Campus Dining Hall. If you haven’t been to North Campus, plan a trip back to WFU to see all the great changes and new buildings. Our campus is growing in a great way! 

Preferred drink at Starbucks: black coffee in my own mug! (I like to keep it simple and encourage sustainability!)

— by Betsy Chapman

Senior Orations – Sarah Fine (’16), Enzymatic Inclusion

Senior Orations are a kind of essay competition where seniors could submit an essay about their Wake Forest experience to be judged (by a group of faculty, if I recall correctly). Ten overall finalists were selected, and of those ten, three Senior Orations were selected to be read at Founder’s Day Convocation last week.  Throughout the rest of the semester, we will feature the top 10 senior orations.

Today we have Sarah Fine (’16), a senior Theatre major from Coral Springs, FL, and her oration “Enzymatic Inclusion.”

— by Betsy Chapman

————–

We are each here – alive and awake – because our bodies are maintaining a favorable environment for appropriate enzymatic activity.  Enzymes are proteins that speed up reactions to rates that are fast enough to sustain life; essentially, enzymes make it possible for our bodies to transform what we have into what we need.

Much like the human body, Wake Forest is a vessel of transformation. Every year, hundreds of new substrates enroll, while hundreds of new products graduate. Along the way, we develop into new, better, versions of ourselves. So, what really changes us? How is Wake Forest able to radically enhance our approaches, our world views, our passions in such a short period of time?

I hypothesize that these changes are due to the enzymatic activity at play on this campus. Perhaps it was the RA who kept you company during a difficult time who inspired you to become an RA yourself. Perhaps it was the student organization that introduced to your passion that encouraged you to serve in a leadership role. Perhaps it was the professor who challenged you to think beyond the text who moved you to declare a certain major. Perhaps it was the Wake Forest tradition that made you smile or laugh or cry that motivated you to create a new Wake Forest tradition. Perhaps it was the friend who accompanied you on that midnight run to Cookout who influenced you not to transfer. Perhaps it was the study abroad program that immersed you in a culture different from your own that stirred you to think more globally. Perhaps it was the university office that felt like home that empowered you to be true to yourself. Perhaps it was the assigned reading that contradicted your strongest beliefs that energized you to consider an alternative perspective. Or, perhaps it was the Biochemistry class that provoked you to think critically about enzymatic activity that prompted you to write a senior oration about enzymes. In any case, something or someone made it possible for you to convert what you brought to this campus into what you are taking away.

But how exactly does this happen? Two models have been proposed to help explain the mechanism by which enzymes catalyze change. The Lock and Key Model proposes that a substrate acts like a key, physically and chemically complementing an enzyme’s lock. However, this model is widely rejected: if a key fits into a lock perfectly, why would the lock work to change the key at all? The more accepted Induced Fit Model postulates that an enzyme binds to a substrate that is only semi-complementary. In this model, the enzyme strains the substrate, and the substrate strains the enzyme. In essence, they make each other uncomfortable and induce physical and chemical changes until they fit each other a little better.  Finally, the product is formed, and the enzyme releases the product. The enzyme is finally available for another reaction. In many ways this mirrors our relationship with Wake Forest.

For many of us, our first days as Demon Deacons were challenging. We were well beyond our comfort zones, and we strained to find our place. Suddenly, we were not the only valedictorians or class presidents or star performers.  We realized Wake Forest was not our perfect compliment. Over the past four years this campus has challenged us and we have challenged this campus. We have both been transformed. Finally, it is time for us to be released, and for our enzymes to be regenerated. As we graduate, we leave behind these halls, these classrooms, these professors for the next group of substrates to begin their journey. Herein lies a deviation from this analogy: our enzymes are not restored perfectly back to their original states. Each one of us has left a permanent impact on this campus, on our enzymes – an impact that hopefully strengthens their drive to help the next round of students.

It is important to note that enzymes function with great levels of specificity. They do not follow a one-size-fits all standard. Each enzyme catalyzes a unique reaction, and binds only to a specific substrate.  As such, each of our Wake Forest experiences is incredibly unique. Each of us was a unique substrate that required a unique set of enzymes to perform a unique set of reactions. It is the collaboration of the products we have become that allows the world to flourish.

There are approximately 75,000 different enzymes in the human body. Exclusion of even a single enzyme could result in severe illness. The buildup of a particular substrate and lack of a particular product could manifest in a life-threatening disease. Similarly, our world will only prosper if all substrates, all people, are given the opportunities and support that they need to succeed. That said, we cannot expect new varieties of substrates to fit into the preexisting enzymes on this campus. While it is important that we welcome a greater diversity of students, it is equally crucial that we provide each of them with appropriate resources.

However, we cannot merely implant new enzymes, and expect them to thrive. All enzymes require distinct environmental conditions. Digestive enzymes of the stomach, for example, require a low pH to function properly. If one were transplanted to the blood, it would likely stop working and be destroyed because of the much higher pH found in the blood stream.

Likewise, simply introducing new resources is not enough. We need to change our environment so that these resource feel both safe and welcomed. We change our environment by choosing inclusive language, by hosting accessible events, by encouraging productive decisions, by celebrating difference. We change our environment by recognizing that the fish’s ability to swim is just as incredible as the cheetah’s ability to climb a tree. We change our environment by being deliberate in the conversations we have, by listening, by sharing, by nurturing.

We are not finished transforming, nor should we ever be. Like molecules in the body, we will constantly change from what we have into what we need, and along the process, we can create a more conducive atmosphere for a wider range of humanitate.

— by Sarah Fine (’16)

Meet a Deac – James Raper (MAEd ’02)

We continue our Meet a Deac series this week with one of my dear friends, Dr. James Raper of the University Counseling Center.  You would have met James if you attended the Just for Parents: Help with the College Transition session during Orientation/move-in weekend; he co-facilitates that program with Dr. Joanne Clinch of the Student Health Service.  You might also have consulted with James, or his fine colleagues in the University Counseling Center (UCC), if you called the UCC with questions or sought advice about concerns.

James co-authored a very helpful series on what counseling appointments look like at Wake Forest. There are two parts: making the initial appointment and what the first session looks like, and the follow up appointment(s). I commend these pieces to you (and your Deacs) because they demystify the counseling process.

Without further ado, Dr. James Raper.

———————–

james rWhat is your official job title?
Director of the University Counseling Center. 

How long have you worked at WFU?
After finishing my internship here in the UCC and graduating in 2002, I was offered an opportunity to temporarily fill a Staff Counselor position that had been vacated in the summer.  Fortunately Dr. Marianne Schubert (the former Director of the UCC) allowed me to hang around after my temporary status ended.  In 2006, I left to pursue my doctorate in counseling at Syracuse University, with the hopes of returning at some point in the future (I’m originally from Winston-Salem, and love living here).  Right around when I finished my coursework at Syracuse, I received a call about an opportunity to return to the UCC, and have been back at Wake since 2008. 

In laymen’s terms, what do you do at WFU?
Most of my career in mental health has been focused on providing individual and group therapy to college students.  The role of the Director is a little bit different in that my attention is particularly focused on reading/interpreting the landscape of our community and ensuring our services match the level and type of needs that exist in our community.

While I continue to provide individual therapy, I spend considerable time providing consultation to all members of our community, educating our students, families, staff, and faculty about mental health, stigma, college student development, and the services that are available both on- and off-campus.  I’m also afforded the opportunity to partner with a broad group of offices across our Division of Campus Life and the larger University to support our collective efforts towards community wellbeing.

Finally, I provide oversight to the absolutely excellent clinical and administrative staff and trainees of the University Counseling Center, staff of the Safe Office, and our Psychiatric Services located in the Student Health Service.

What part of your job is your favorite?
Honestly, this is really hard.  I certainly still love doing individual counseling and having that 1:1 connection with students – I can’t imagine that not being a part of my professional life.  However I’ve also enjoyed the opportunity to connect with members of the campus that I hadn’t previously had the opportunity to, and to hopefully decrease barriers to seeking appropriate mental health care.  Additionally I’ve discovered that really enjoy strategic planning and bringing a mental health/wellbeing perspective to the work that our university is doing.  So that’s three things – sorry! [I’ll forgive you.]

How would you characterize Wake Forest students?  What are some common attributes they have?
They are poised to have an immense impact on our world!  This generation of students sometimes gets a bad rap.  Wake Forest students bring significant skill and ability, and one of the reasons I love being a counselor in higher education is that we are helping to instill even greater inter and intrapersonal skill, and also helping with reducing the real and perceived barriers towards living lives of greater meaning.  They care very much for one another, and worry about their families and loved ones.

What advice would you give to students and parents?
Seek opportunities to struggle, slip, fall, be mediocre, and even “fail.” Sit with those experiences a bit, and see what you can learn from them.  Notice how they feel and think about what you’d like to do differently in the future.  Remind yourself that the world has not fallen apart, you are still loved, and you are still capable. Then go get support, reassurance, a band-aid, a cookie, etc., from trusted and safe friends, family members and mentors.  This is such important guidance, in my opinion, and while I try to practice it for myself and with my own children, it’s still very much a struggle.

What do you like best about working at Wake Forest?
Without a doubt, the relationships with my colleagues.  I do a lot of work with WFU staff who go unnoticed. That in and of itself is not a bad thing – many of them would want it to be that way.  But I do feel very honored to be a part of a very large team that works very hard, often during day and night, to help students grow and succeed.  Additionally, I wouldn’t have chosen the career I did if it wasn’t truly rewarding.  The staff of the UCC are incredibly well-educated and well-trained, and are dedicated to working with any student who might come through our doors.

This really is fun for me – turning the tables on the counselor and being the one to ask all these personal questions!  Let’s move to the bonus round!

Book you’re reading now:  I’m rereading The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley.  My own high school and college experiences exposed me to Malcolm X and I’ve maintained a strong interest in his evolution throughout his life.  Of course, I was on the edge of my seat when two of his daughters, Attallah and Ilyasah Shabazz, spoke at our recent annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration.

johncoltraneWhat music are you listening to these days: Some modern R&B (Jesse Boykins III, Alina Baraz), 90’s hip-hop (A Tribe Called Quest), alternative (Beach House), and always John Coltrane and bebop jazz.

THE WEST WING -- SEASON 3 -- Pictured: (l-r) Dule Hill as Charlie Young; Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn; Allison Janney as Claudia Jean 'C.J.' Cregg, Martin Sheen as President Josiah "Jed" Bartlet, Richard Schiff as Toby Ziegler, Stockard Channing as Abbey Bartlet, John Spencer as Leo McGarry, Janel Moloney as Donna Moss, Bradley Whitford as Josh Lyman -- Photo by: David Rose/NBCU Photo Bank

THE WEST WING — SEASON 3 — Pictured: (l-r) Dule Hill as Charlie Young; Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn; Allison Janney as Claudia Jean ‘C.J.’ Cregg, Martin Sheen as President Josiah “Jed” Bartlet, Richard Schiff as Toby Ziegler, Stockard Channing as Abbey Bartlet, John Spencer as Leo McGarry, Janel Moloney as Donna Moss, Bradley Whitford as Josh Lyman — Photo by: David Rose/NBCU Photo Bank

Favorite movies: Nope, you can’t make me pick.  Not a movie, but I pretty much watch The West Wing on a constant loop.  Also the Band of Brothers miniseries. Mystery Science Theater 3000 (if there is one show that summarizes my sense of humor, it’s that one).  Lots and lots documentaries (Civil War was my favorite).

Apps you frequent: Flipboard, Qello Concerts (got a subscription this concert streaming service, and it’s very cool), ESPN, Pandora, Camera+ (I love taking photographs).

CB spicy noodlesGuilty pleasure: For food it’s either the spicy noodles from a local deli called The Carving Board [me too!] or peanut butter cups.  I also love naps (shout out to my wonderful wife Paige who lets me sleep in many if not most weekend mornings while she wrangles our two great boys).

20130110path0093Favorite place to be on campus: My office or taking a lazy walk with a colleague on the Reynolda Village path.

What most people don’t know about you:  I’m absolutely a big kid and love playing video games.  Anything from the most current FIFA to Little Big Planet 3 with my sons, to the original Mario Bros.

— by Betsy Chapman

Where Are They?

I sure hope you have ESPN U as part of your cable TV service and could watch last night’s incredible men’s basketball game. Our Deacs had not been doing well of late – hadn’t won a game since January 10th, I believe – but that all changed when we took on Boston College at the Joel.  It was a 78-44 win, which is a huge victory and probably a much needed boost to our team’s confidence. Men’s baseball is on a roll with a three win streak. Go Deacs!

2 22 16 7 Thought for today’s Daily Deac we might do a bit of a trivia. Wake Forest has a fantastic art collection, with over 1,600 works located in 35 different venues on and off campus.  I happened to pass by one of my very favorite pieces the other day – this Barbara Kruger lithograph, Savoir C’est Pouvoir (“knowledge is power,” if my French still serves).

It made me wonder if your students had ever seen this piece of art, or the others nearby. Below you’ll see Reef Passage from Paul Fournier of Canada; Noche from Spanish artist Jose Ortega; and Cove at St. Ann’s by American artist Paul King.

2 22 16 21 2 22 16 2 2 22 16 1

Where in the world are these pieces of art hanging? Maybe your Deacs know where? If not, maybe it’s time do to a little scavenger hunt?

Bonus question: at the end of this post are three works that might be a little harder for your students to find. One is by Maud Gatewood, one by Parks Duffey, and one by a local folk artist Sam McMillan.  Where in the world are they hanging on campus?

— by Betsy Chapman

2 22 16 51 2 22 16 5 2 22 16 4

Wrapping Up the Week

Wake Forest University holds its annual Founders' Day Convocation in Wait Chapel on Thursday, February 18, 2016. James T. “Jim” Williams (’62, JD ’66, P ’89, P ’92, P ’96) receives the Medallion of Merit from President Nathan O. Hatch.

Wake Forest University holds its annual Founders’ Day Convocation in Wait Chapel on Thursday, February 18, 2016. James T. “Jim” Williams (’62, JD ’66, P ’89, P ’92, P ’96) receives the Medallion of Merit from President Nathan O. Hatch.

Yesterday was Founder’s Day Convocation. At the ceremony, there were numerous awards given for teaching and research – I hope you will take a look at the list of faculty who were honored, as it is a great list.  At Founder’s Day we also award the Medallion of Merit, the University’s highest honor.  This year there were two recipients, one of whom was Life Trustee Jim Williams (’62, JD ’66, P ’89, P ’92, P ‘96),  I had the pleasure of having lunch with Jim once, and I can tell you firsthand he is a remarkable, wonderful, interesting man, and loves Wake Forest dearly.

Wake Forest University holds its annual Founders' Day Convocation in Wait Chapel on Thursday, February 18, 2016. Jenny Robinson Puckett (‘71 P ‘00) receives the Medallion of Merit from President Nathan O. Hatch.

Wake Forest University holds its annual Founders’ Day Convocation in Wait Chapel on Thursday, February 18, 2016. Jenny Robinson Puckett (‘71 P ‘00) receives the Medallion of Merit from President Nathan O. Hatch.

Our second recipient is alumna and former Spanish instructor Jenny Puckett (’71, P’00).  Jenny is an amazing human being – a fabulous teacher (she taught me for two semesters), mentor to one of our sororities on campus, and someone deeply dedicated to the history of Wake Forest.  She lives our tradition of “friendliness and honor.”

Jenny has now retired from teaching – perhaps only our seniors might have had her in class? – but she has found a new calling in sharing the history and traditions of Wake Forest with others.  Some of you would have seen her at our Wake Will campaign events.

Before retiring from the classroom, Jenny was invited to give a “Last Lecture” speech.  This was a series where well-known campus people were asked what they would say to students if they could only lecture one last time.  This is her Seven Things You Probably Didn’t Know about Mother So Dear.  (You can give it a read – you might learn things your own Deacs don’t yet know!)

There were also senior orations read at Founder’s Day Convocation – hope to cover those next week if they are put online.

Now looking ahead to the coming week, the Learning Assistance Center reminded me that they are holding a workshop:  “The Study Smarter, Not Harder workshop series will introduce WFU students to a number of helpful strategies that will improve academic performance. Our first workshop for the spring semester is scheduled for Monday, February 22, from 5:00-6:00 in Greene Hall 145. This workshop will focus specifically on improving time management and test taking skills.”  This is a wonderful opportunity for your Deacs to hone their study skills.

And because it is Friday, we remind you of the opportunity to call your Deacs and have a chat 🙂

Have a great weekend, my Deac families!

— by Betsy Chapman

 

Nice, Sunny Day

Today is a nice and sunny day on campus. The air is cool, but the sun is warm.

I had lunch in the Benson Center today and saw a lot of students hanging around at the tables on the patio. After having had snow earlier this week, the nicer weather was certainly welcome.

Take advantage of this good weather, Deacs! Take a relaxing walk outside to get some exercise, do your reading outdoors and soak up some vitamin D, or just lounge at one of the cafe tables and watch the world go by.

Not a bad way to spend your time 🙂

— by Betsy Chapman

Wake ‘N Shake

Today’s Daily Deac is a guest post from Colin Johnson (’16), Chair of Wake ‘N Shake.

———–

The disease of cancer has touched many of our lives in painful and tragic ways.  Here at Wake Forest, we are seeking to find a cure for cancer through a somewhat alternative method. Wake ‘N Shake is our very own twelve-hour dance marathon, and Wake Forest’s largest student philanthropy event of the entire year!

After 10 years of students dancing to find a cure, Wake ‘N Shake’s eleventh anniversary is taking place Saturday, March 19 from noon to midnight in Reynolds Varsity Gym.  Entirely student-led from its inception in 2006, cumulatively we have raised over $900,000 during the first ten years for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Research Fund, which directly supports the world class research at the WFU Comprehensive Cancer Center. This year it is our goal to further this total by over $225,000, and additionally have more than 1,400 of the undergrad students participate.

We have a great leadership team of over 25 students, and well over 100 committee members assisting in the planning and execution of this signature event – not to mention the huge crowd of students that come for an awesome day of dancing and celebrating life in the spirit of Pro Humanitate.

Please visit our website at www.wakenshake.com or email us at wns@nullwfu.edu if you have any questions. We hope that your son or daughter will join the Wake’N Shake Team on March 19th.

by Colin Johnson ’16, Wake ‘N Shake Co-chair

Plugging a Few Events

The snow has melted away for the most part, and life goes back to normal at Wake Forest.  There are a couple of events coming up in the near term that merit a mention to you (in hope that your Deacs may take advantage).

Tonight at 7 pm in Wait Chapel, the Office of Sustainability will co-host Truth, Lies, and Politics 2016: Ideology, Rationality, and Choice in an Election Year.  This will be moderated by WF’s own Melissa Harris-Perry, and the speakers are from Harvard, Yale, and NYU. This is meant to be a conversation around our obligation as citizens in a democracy, to be informed about issues of public importance, such as the human impact on climate, and the causes of economic inequality. The event is free and open to the public.

On Thursday at 4 pm in Wait Chapel is our Founders Day Convocation, where we honor the history of Wake Forest, recognize the Medallion of Merit winners, and bestow faculty awards. If your student has not been to a convocation, they are a part of the ceremonial life of the insititution, and they should go. They should especially go if they are seniors, as there is a senior video shown, and three of the Senior Orations will be read.

This week we have a double shot of the Secrest Artist Series.  This is a special offering of two concerts on successive nights, Wednesday and Thursday, February 17-18 at 7:30 pm in Brendle Recital Hall.  Cellist David Finckel, violinist Philip Setzer, and pianist Wu Han make up one of the world’s finest piano trios. Finckel, Han, and Setzer will join the Secrest Series for an unprecedented two-night pair of concerts featuring the complete piano trios of Ludwig van Beethoven, including the Ghost Trio and the magisterial Archduke Trio.  You can see the offerings on their website.

Your Deacs will also have multiple chances to see the University Theatre performance of “The Waiting Room” in the next several days. I had friends go over the weekend and they praised the peformance.

Finally, this weekend is our big TEDxWFU conference. One of our speakers will be current parent Mark Hurd (P’18), CEO of Oracle.  Read more online and see how to get tickets.

So many dishes on the giant WFU smorgasbord. Sample many of the delicacies, my Deacs. The buffet does not last forever.

— by Betsy Chapman