Site Content


Earth Day Fair

earth day 2015Today is Earth Day, and the Office of Sustainability has created a wonderful event for your students to enjoy.  The Earth Day Fair will run from 3-7 pm today on the Mag Quad (south side of campus, aka Manchester Quad).

Details are below.  It’s a gorgeous day again today.  Hope your students will come out to the Earth Day Fair and soak up all the goodness they can.

– by Betsy Chapman


Pet some ponies, play with puppies, have your face painted, challenge a friend to a game, and make your commitment to the Earth community…

The WFU Earth Day Fair is today, Wednesday, April 22nd from 4:00-7:00pm on the Mag Quad!

Commemorative t-shirts are being given away every half hour from 4:30-6:30 pm; all participants can enter to win over $1000 worth of raffle prizes.

Legendary Sunshine, Village Juice, Twin City Hive, and Roots Hummus are handing out delectable free samples. In addition to a jammin’ line-up, Wake Radio will be playing throughout the fair. Bring your wallet and visit local exhibitors.

Entertainment Schedule:

3:00pm – Campus Sustainability Awards in Reynolda Hall Green Room

4:00pm – Afro-Cuban drumming circle

4:30pm – Teach-in on Magnolia Quad featuring faculty Vanessa Zboreak, Richard Schneider, Justin Catanoso, and Miles Silman

5:30pm – Yoga by The Breathing Room

6:00pm – Student performances

6:30pm – Minor Variations

One love,
The Office of Sustainability


Brings May Flowers?

After a thoroughly beautiful afternoon for Campus Day this past Friday, we had a decent Saturday weather-wise and then yesterday it was a soggy rainy mess all day.  Looking out our windows, there is a storm that looks to be rolling in to town, and we’re predicted to have more rain today.  Hopefully the April showers will bring May flowers.

At the end of Campus Day, I went to a recital put on by the Music Department.  This was the first time I had gone to one of these in many years, but it will not be the last.  The department puts on a great many performances, and you can see their schedule here.  If your Deacs have not gone to a performance, they should.  Our student musicians are really extraordinary.

And let me qualify that description by confessing I am not a musician and know nothing about music (other than what I like).  But even a novice can see and hear talent.  The first student was a violinst, Luna Zhou.  She was playing a violin concerto by Mozart and I swear to you, from the moment her bow struck the first note, I was astonished at the sounds she could make and how the notes filled the room.  This concerto at the end had a lot of very high and very low notes, and she played a wide range of beautiful notes.

The next student was Kedi Zheng on flute.  The piece he was playing had some remarkable fast bits, and his hands flew over the holes in the flute at an amazing pace.  Some of the music was very light and jaunty, and I could almost imagine the notes spinning out of the end of his flute and circling the air throughout Brendle Recital Hall.

The third performers were a classical guitar duet by Nick Bennett and Lando Pieroni.  I was struck by how little they moved – not at all like rock guitar where the player is all over the place.  They were sitting, but relatively still, just their fingering and picking hands moving, with an occasional head nod to cue each other on timing.  They played a duet first, and I recall thinking that I wished this piece would go on forever, it was so gorgeous (Oriental, La Maja de Goya by Enrique Granados).  Then they did individual pieces afterwards.

Following the guitarists were two trumpeters.  Hana Choi came first, and I was surprised at just how loud a trumpet can be while still being melodic and harmonious.  Then came Jeremy Sexton, whose name appears on a plaque in the Brendle lobby for the Patricia Sloan Mize award.  Jeremy was playing a composition of his own, a trumpet sonata with three movements.  To my untrained ears it was a thoroughly modern classical piece, rich and complex.  There was even a point where he played some notes that almost sounded woodwind-like, and I had no idea trumpets could sound that way.  It was an impressive piece of music and like Hana’s and the others, it looked like it had a great deal of technical difficulty.

brendle recitalMy schedule was such that I regrettably had to miss the last two performers.  But it was such a treat to see these musicians.  They were amazing.  So please do encourage your students to look out for opportunities to go to Brendle and hear world-class music by people who might be in their calculus class or live on their hall.  You never know the talent that is lurking on this campus.  And Brendle Recital Hall is a beautiful place to spend an hour – all warm amber light on the stage,  purplish background, and cool air.

Finally, we close today’s Daily Deac with an invitation for you to participate in Pro Humanitate Day on May 9th.  Our motto means “for humanity,” and we are challenging alumni, parents, and friends of Wake Forest to join us for a day of service for the good of humanity.  You can see full information below – and watch this video.  It is excellent.

Pro Humanitate Day – May 9th

Do you realize that one in five American children lives without consistent access to adequate nourishment?  For these children and their families, summer can be especially hard, as they lose access to the school breakfasts and lunches that they rely upon.

This May 9, we can turn the tables on childhood hunger.

By joining fellow Deacs in your local community and across the nation, you can raise food and awareness to make a difference in the lives of hungry children and their families. Make the choice to connect with old friends and make a few new ones, while doing our part to make sure that no child goes hungry this summer.

Join me and other Wake Forest alumni on May 9 as we show the world that Good Wears Black as we come together in the fight against childhood hunger.

There are three ways to participate:

  1. Volunteer.  Visit Pro Humanitate Day 2015to register for your city.
  1. Collect Food.  Fill a bag with food items and take to your local food pantry and let us know about it! Check our websitefor a list of common needs and to see if your community has a drop-off location.
  1. Share photos and challenge classmates using #GoodWearsBlack. Be included! Sharewith Wake Forest Alumni Engagement about your experience.

You are part of the Wake Forest story – Be inspired: Pro Humanitate Video


– by Betsy Chapman


Campus Day Tomorrow!

deacon-balloons-2There are a number of big days on campus throughout the year: Commencement, move-in, Hit the Bricks, Project Pumpkin, Lovefeast – and Campus Day for Accepted Students.  Campus Day will be held tomorrow, and a second Campus Day next Friday.

For maybe half of our Campus Day accepted students (and their parents/family members), they are coming to campus one last time before making the final decision as to where they will enroll.  Kicking the tires, if you will, between Wake and [other top choice school].  For the other half, they know they are coming here, whether that is from Early Decision of if we were their top choice in Regular Decision.

There will be several hundred families visiting on each Campus Day, so your currently-enrolled Deacs will see a lot of visitor traffic.  And if you are one of the new families coming, please stop by our Parent Programs table near Campus Day registration and say hello and see some of the information we have available for you.

For families coming to second Campus Day (on the 24th), there is a special treat for you.  Depending on your travel schedule, you can see the Spring Dance Concert in the Mainstage Theatre of Scales Fine Arts Center, which will feature new student choreography on April 23-26, 2015; you can buy tickets here.  The opening night of the dance concert is also the same night that the student art exhibit opens in the Hanes Gallery in Scales.  No matter which Campus Day you attend, try to get down to Scales and look around at the gallery.

For families of currently-enrolled students, please encourage your Deacs to go to the Spring Dance Concert and the art gallery exhibit.  Artists and dancers here collaborated in an amazing way recently.  Three classes did a collaborative project based on choreographer Remy Charlip’s Airmail Dances.  Charlip had forgotten to choreograph a dance for a friend, so he sent her a series of drawings of the body in various positions [that would show the moves of the dance].   Our art and dance students made their own airmail dances by drawing their own positions and then interpreting them via dance.

This is such a cool project – you can read the whole story of Airmail Dances here, and even better see a video of the beautiful results.

One more event to make you aware of on this gloomy, rainy, coldish Thursday.  Next Friday afternoon (4/24)  will be the last Fridays @ Farrell of this semester.  Fridays @ Farrell are fun, informal networking receptions for School of Business alumni and parents.  F@F will be on Friday, April 24th from 5-7 pm on the Reynolds American Foundation Terrace, just outside off the Living Room.  Register for it here.

And don’t forget – tomorrow is Black and Gold Friday!  Wear your Wake Forest colors proudly and show your spirit in your hometown, at work, etc.  Go Deacs!

– by Betsy Chapman


A Grande Dame in WFU History

Yesterday the Wake Forest family lost a much-beloved member, Lu Leake.  Lu came to Wake Forest in 1964 as dean of women, and she had held many different titles, including assistant vice president for planning and dean of the summer school, before retiring in 1997 as associate vice president for academic affairs.  In 1996, she received the Medallion of Merit, Wake Forest’s highest award.

Of course your students would likely never have met Lu Leake or known who she was.  But she was a powerhouse at Wake Forest for decades, and at least for me, I think of Lu as a pioneer for female administrators on the Reynolda Campus and one who helped pave the way for the next generation of us to come.  She was smart, dedicated, and respected.  She changed the lives of many a student, and her praises will be sung in the coming days by people who knew her far better than I did.

20090917students0050 Your students might not have known Lu, but every time they go to the Mag Room for lunch and sling their backpacks on the big table, I wonder if they realize they are in the Lu Leake Lounge (the area outside the Mag Room).  Her portrait was hung in the LLL many years ago.   Below I have some pictures of Lu in the lounge.

Universities are shaped and changed in big and small ways by the people who dedicate their lives to them.  Lu was one of those people, and your students’ experience here is better because of her.  Even if they never knew her, or realized they were sitting in her lounge.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Wait Chapel.

lu_leake0034 2001F_lu_leake046

– by Betsy Chapman

This Past Weekend

It would be hard to have improved on the weekend we just had.  Weatherwise we were in the low- to mid-70s, sunny, light breezes.  Perfect.  Some of our students hit the road for beach weekend, others stayed on campus.  I suspect some of them might have been watching the Masters to see a young man their age, Jordan Spieth, win the green jacket (and $1.8 mil) at the tender age of 21 – and dreaming of what they’d do with that money if they’d won it :)

There was an event on Saturday morning on campus.  It was something akin to a mashup of the Color Run and a festival.  In the pictures you see below students are celebrating Holi, the Hindu spring festival of colors, by throwing packets of colored powder on each other on Manchester Plaza (aka Mag Quad).  It looks like it was spectacularly fun.

20150411holi3587 20150411holi3687 20150411holi3752 20150411holi3821 20150411holi3835 20150411holi3887

– by Betsy Chapman

Guest Blogger: Lucas Swenson (’15) and the Senior Sendoff

Today’s Daily Deac was written by Student Union president Lucas Swenson (’15).


senior sendoffWake Forest parents and families,

I am one of the co-chairs of the WFU Senior Sendoff this year, along with Stephanie Hom (’15). I am excited to be a part of the planning of a special event that is being created this year to celebrate the graduating class at the Winston-Salem Dash Stadium on April 22 at 7 PM. In the past, the Department of Campus Life has partnered with the Office of Alumni Engagement to do a Senior Dinner. This year, that event has been re-imagined by a committee of students and staff and is truly going to be better than ever.

Members of the Class of 2015 will enjoy free food, beer & wine, fireworks, dancing from a live band and DJ, a class photo, as well as a short speech to be shared by a selected senior.  Please encourage any seniors you know to submit a Senior Toast.  This is meant to be a thoughtful reflection of the student’s last four years, and will be delivered to the entire class prior to the fireworks show.

Additionally, we will have a senior slideshow playing on the stadium screens throughout the evening. We invite seniors to share their “Top 10″ photos highlighting their last four years by emailing We know that the Class of 2015 has had some noteworthy moments during their time at Wake Forest, so we would love to see some of these in the slideshow.

Seniors need to RSVP for this event to reserve their senior gift. 

Senior Sendoff is a wonderful opportunity for seniors to celebrate their accomplishments.  We hope to see all of the Class of 2015 there!

– by Lucas Swenson (’15) 

Bits and Pieces

Happy Wednesday, Deac families!  It was supposed to be rainy today but it has been a mix of sun and clouds and very warm.  There have been tons of campus tours of late.  Seems like every time I’m on the Quad, there are multiple tour groups running.  We are heavy into visit season, with high schoolers on spring break and trying to squeeze in college visits while they can still see class in session.

Great news emerged from campus yesterday, and that is that one of our own was named a Gates Cambridge Scholar. Abdulmalik Obaid (’15), a physics major, will study in Cambridge next year in this prestigious program.

For the philatelists out there, a new Maya Angelou stamp was unveiled.  Dr. Angelou had been Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest for more than 30 years.  She passed away last June, but she made indelible marks on the students she taught.

This afternoon there will be a special series of events sponsored by the Office of the Chaplain:

Wednesday, April 8 with Rafi Spitzer, Rabbinical Student

4:15 pm.       “Ask the Young Rabbi” – Question & Answer Session. Rafi. Reynolda Hall 17

5:00 pm.       Mezuzah Ceremony, Jewish Life Office. Rafi and Gail. Reynolda  Hall 17A

5:15 pm.       Torah Processional. Dance the WFU Torah to its new home in Davis Chapel.  Starting at 5:15 pm in Reynolda Hall 17

Rafi Spitzer is a student at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York studying to be a Rabbi. Both of his parents are Rabbis, as well as his grandfather. 

After graduating from Boston University with a degree in Anthropology, Rafi worked for two years as an educator at the Reform synagogue Temple Beth Elohim of Wellesley, MA. Rafi is certified as a Mikvah Guide (a facilitator of ritual immersions) by Mayyim Hayyim, the first liberal mikvah in the country. He is a long time staff member at Camp Ramah in New England, and works at the Atria, an old age home in New York on Friday afternoons. Rafi loves to cook and to travel. He lives on the Upper West Side with his wife, Rachael Besser, who teaches second grade in a charter school in Harlem.

It’s a beautiful day to be at Wake Forest!


– by Betsy Chapman

DESK Is Coming

desk-2013Another one of our terrific service projects is coming up soon.  DESK (Discovering Education through Student Knowledge) is a fun, whimsical, colorful afternoon of students decorating desks for local schoolchildren.  It will be held on Tuesday, April 7th on the Manchester Quad (aka Mag Quad).

The Events Calendar has more info about DESK.  If your Deac is looking for a fun way to give back to the local community, urge him or her to get involved!

– by Betsy Chapman


desk9923-for-page desk-2013-wide-shot 2013 desk 3 2013 desk students 2D.E.S.K. (Discovering Education through Student Knowledge)

Tuesday, April 7 at 3:00pm to 7:00pm

Manchester Plaza 1834 Wake Forest Road Winston-Salem, NC 27106

Discovering Education through Student Knowledge (D.E.S.K.) is an annual community service project at Wake Forest University that that was started by two students after they identified a lack of work space in the homes of the children they tutored.

To address the problem, they created D.E.S.K. to provide restored desks for selected Old Town Elementary students. Each year, around 55 desks are painted by teams of Wake Forest student volunteers. For more information, please visit:




Recap of Springfest

The Daily Deac is out of the office this week, so we’ll be bringing you some coverage of past events as well as ones to come.

Springfest was held this past Wednesday, and our University Photographer, Ken Bennett, grabbed some great pictures of the event.  Many thanks to Student Union for all their work on Springfest, and hope your students got out there and enjoyed the fun!

– by Betsy Chapman

20150325carnival4521 20150325carnival4539 20150325carnival4557 20150325carnival4611 20150325carnival4621 20150325carnival4632


New Dean of the College Named

michele.gillespie.620x350-460x260Today was a big news day.  The new Dean of the College was named, and it was a familiar name to our campus: Michele Gillespie:

“Wake Forest University has appointed Presidential Endowed Professor of Southern History Michele Gillespie as Dean of the College, with academic oversight for the undergraduate school of arts and sciences. Gillespie will begin serving as dean July 1.

Gillespie joined the Wake Forest faculty in 1999. She was named Kahle Family Professor of History in 2003 and served as associate provost for academic initiatives from 2007-2010. In 2013, Gillespie was the first Wake Forest faculty member to be honored with an endowed Presidential Chair, which recognizes and supports faculty who excel in both academic leadership and outstanding scholarship. She also serves as the faculty representative to the Advancement Committee of the Board of Trustees”  (see the full news story.)

There have been many times when she has been a part of programs or events our office has planned, and those events have always been exceptional.  She is recognized as one who embodies the teacher-scholar ideal, and connects well with students as well as others on campus.

Full disclosure: I have known Michele for many years and she has been a trusted friend and colleague.  She helped mentor me when I was in a terrible bind professionally and did all she could to help me – even when she didn’t have to, and even though helping me didn’t benefit her in any way.  That’s the kind of person she is.  I will always be grateful to her for that – and for the example she set that it is always better to try and help someone if you can.

So what does this mean for your students exactly? The Dean of the College has oversight for the undergraduate arts and sciences programs (i.e., everything except business).  So she will be working with the academic departments in the arts, literature, humanities, social sciences, and math and natural sciences to help make our already-great programs even better.  She begins her new position on July 1st, and I know there will be many good things to come.

My kudos to the search committee, who had the unenviable job of sorting through a lot of wonderful applicants.  Happily, one of Wake Forest’s own rose to the top.

Welcome to your new role, Dean-Elect Gillespie!


– by Betsy Chapman