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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.

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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! 

Respectfully, 

The 2015 WFU/WSSU MLK Jr. Planning Committee

 

- by Betsy Chapman

National Day on Writing

Fall Break is tomorrow, and judging by the parking lots some of our students have already headed off someplace special for the long weekend.

I was in a meeting today and heard about a project taking place this coming Monday, October 20th – the National Day on Writing.  This looks like a very interesting event and I hope your students will participate in it.  Details are below.

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On Monday October 20, the Writing Center will be celebrating the National Day on Writing. There will be a table in the Benson Center outside the food court from 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. where we will invite students to write collaboratively Wake Forest’s longest ghost story–one sentence at a time (as part of a writing exercise called an “exquisite corpse”).

In addition, the 2014 theme from the National Council of Teachers of English is “Write My Community.” Because we know how important creating an inclusive campus community is for Wake Forest, the Writing Center saw an opportunity to invite students to participate in a variety of ways.

The Writing Center will ask students to share their thoughts on what the Wake Forest community is right now as well as what they think it could be in the future. They will write these ideas of community on notecards that will be posted at the event.  Later, an art piece will be displayed using the notecards, and that will reside in the Writing Center.

The campus is encouraged to participate in Write My Community on social media by using the hashtags #writemycommunity and #wfu (together, if possible).

Day on Writing October 20th

Various and Sundry Wednesday

Today’s Daily Deac is a little bit of everything.  Stay with us as we meander through various and sundry notes and observations.

The weather is perfect today.  Sunny, nearly 80.  You’re warm if you stay in the sun, but you aren’t baking.  A walk across campus feels refreshing and not too hot (unless you are carrying a really heavy load in your backpack or messenger bag).

On the Quad around 11 am, there was an animated game of football being played by what looked like kids from late elementary school or early middle school.  They must be here for a field trip.  I must have seen them toward the end of their visit, because their teachers were lining them up to get a picture of them.  So imagine about 20-30 kids, all lined up in the walkway mid-Quad, Wait Chapel in the backdrop.  Evidently the cool colors for the youth of today is neon anything.  I saw lots of neon greens and oranges.

Even on a day like today, there were a fair number of students in the library.  My observation about the students I saw:  those who were sitting in the atrium at tables tended to have their laptops open and appeared to be working on them.  The students I saw peppered in random chairs in the stacks or other areas all seemed glued to their phones.  Now, I didn’t see the content of the atrium table laptop screens, so they could have been IMing their friends (rather than working), so filter that as you will.  I just found it curious that nearly all the students sitting in nooks and crannies were on phones vs. having their heads in a book.

WFU is in the news, as it often is.  I caught a glimpse of Inside Higher Ed, where there is an article about students seeking advice from campus chaplains on career direction.  Our own Andy Chan, Vice President for Personal and Career Development, is quoted in the article:  ”I think a lot of times, we get so focused on outcomes — do students have a job, do they go to grad school — that all the energy is focused just on what a student might be skilled at,” he said. “And sometimes that might take a student down a path that’s not the right fit for them as a person.”

There are some noteworthy athletic events coming up as well.  As seen on the WFU home page: “The No. 16 WFU field hockey team will host No. 1 UNC at Kentner Stadium on Thursday, Oct. 9, at 5 p.m. Enjoy free hot dogs, pom poms and buttons while supplies last. Wear black to black out the Tar Heels! Admission is free.”  Our field hockey team is amazing, and we really would love to see LOTS more black and gold than Carolina Blue.  So urge your students to support our Deacs.

Also from the home page: “The WFU men’s and women’s basketball teams will host their annual ‘Black & Gold Madness’ event on Friday, Oct. 24, in Reynolds Gymnasium. The event will follow WFU volleyball taking on Miami at 6 p.m. Both events are free.”  This is a really fun event, the first look at our basketball team.  Hopes are high among the Deacon faithful that Coach Manning will usher in a new era of greatness on the court.

Reminder too that Sweet Honey in the Rock will be on Thursday evening via the Secrest Artist Series.

Finally, I give you the fourth and final photo from our Unity and Respect campaign (and the other three to show the change from week to week).  This has been a meaningful way for campus members to gather and show their unity and respect for all.  I am rather sad it’s stopping, to tell you the truth.

This is a special campus, with special people who give so much to our students (and faculty and staff) every day.  I wish you all could know the folks in this picture.   I am so proud to work among them.

Together Tuesdays 1  Week one

 

 

 

 

 

together tuesdays 2  Week two

 

 

 

 

together tuesdays 3

Week three

 

 

 

 

unity and respect 4  Week four

 

 

 

- by Betsy Chapman

Hit. The. Bricks.

Today is the big day.  Hit the Bricks is here and it is awesome!  If you check out the Quad Cam, the best place you can see students running is as they cross the front of Wait Chapel.  You can catch a glimpse on the far left near the arch.

There is also a ton of activity in the Quad grass.  There are tents set up, lawn chairs, sofas, banners.  Students throwing footballs to each other, or frisbees.  And along the sides of the walkway, student organizations have set up tables and stations, sometimes as the ‘trade off’ place for the key card that is being used this year to track laps.  Other times they are selling food.  Everywhere you look, there is something cool to see, or eat.

A nice thing is that there are a lot of positive vibes from the student tables as you walk or run by them.  Some one made a sign saying something like “GREAT JOB! KEEP GOING!” and it was a sight for sore eyes as I was struggling my way around.

Some of your kids, let me tell you, are remarkably fast.  Ridiculous even.  They are in the best shape of their lives, and it shows.  I had no idea when I was their age that I was in the best shape I might ever be in.  I hope your kids realize it!  To be able to run that many laps with a backpack full of sand and still look refreshed is a miracle.

All through the day, music is played on loudspeakers.  Upbeat, popular stuff.  Pharrell’s “Happy.”  They are playing some older stuff too – everything from Beyonce to the Beastie Boys to the Beatles.  “Baby you can drive my car…”  Some of the students on the sidelines are singing along to some of the songs, and for a while there was a girl dancing in a tutu on top of the wall mid-Quad.

Occasionally the music is interrupted when they make an announcement.  Certain points in the day you can get extra laps for doing something special: going a lap without your feet touching the ground (we saw scooters and bikes), and there was a wacky costume lap too. Supposedly at 4 there will be a Danny Manning lap (not sure what will happen there).  I happened to witness four ROTC cadets run a lap while carrying a fifth cadet on a stretcher.  That was Impressive.

It is super fun to see what all the students are doing, as well as the staff and faculty teams.  Some groups are wearing matching shirts, or have some identifying logo or color.  The truly competitive teams have a lot of strategies they use to win.  The one that looks to be the most effective is to have each team member sprint a lap, then pass the key card to the next guy or girl, and then you recover until the other nine team members have run and it’s your turn again.  Some of the more recreational teams divide it up in time slots.  I ran some (but mostly walked) for my adopted department of the Z Smith Reynolds Library in a 50 minute shift.  Every team’s gathering point has a person or two there to cheer you on as you go by – clapping, yelling encouragement, etc.

It is a day of terrific camaraderie and no small amount of sweat.  But it is one of those events where you know you are contributing to the Greater Good, and it is a gorgeous sunny day and it makes you feel glad to be alive.

htb 2014 2htb 2014 2I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t tired.  I am exhausted.  My shift was in the midday heat and it took a lot out of my Class of 1992 body.  So I am recovering at the tables outside of Subway, drinking some Gatorade at a shady table.  Here’s a couple of pics from my vantage point.

Great job to all our organizers, all the students, faculty, and staff who ran/walked.  And here’s to all the people we know and love who are fighting cancer.  May we find a cure and heal you all.

Hit the Bricks Is Tomorrow!

20111006bricks3846Tomorrow is one of my very, very favorite days on campus: Hit the Bricks.  The Events Calendar describes Hit the Bricks as follows:

“Hit the Bricks is a Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund philanthropy now in its 12th year. Relay teams of students, faculty and staff will walk and/or run on the brick pavers around Hearn Plaza to help raise awareness and funds to find a cure for cancer.

Engraved Bricks are awarded to the winning teams for 5 separate divisions. Food, music and games are presented throughout the 8 hours of the event.

20100930bricks3115All participants who are present at 7 pm will walk a final remembrance lap to honor those family and friends who have fought the good fight against cancer.”

There is a Hit the Bricks website where you can read more about the history of the event, rules and FAQ, etc.  But I will give you the scoop here as well.

There are teams of 10 runners, and the goal is to run (or walk) a lap around the Quad.  Each runner has a baton that gets scanned at a station once a lap, so there is an autotally of your team’s performance.  If you are a hardcore person with a strong back, you can run with a backpack that has (I believe) 15 lbs of sand in it, and you get two scans per lap.  (Many of our students have those strong young backs and can run with backpacks.  I myself cannot.)

20100930bricks7117The event starts at 11 am, and throughout the day there are speakers, music, breaks to award prizes, and a big leaderboard that gets updated regularly.  There is a lot of genteel competition between the teams.  Some are quite competitive – both student teams and faculty/staff teams – and there are some more recreational teams.

20091001bricks3916One of the great parts is that students come out all day and watch, even if they are not running.  Student organizations bring lawn chairs or even sofas out onto the Quad to cheer on their teams.  It is an amazing display of school spirit and unity in the fight against cancer.

I can’t think of anyone who has not had a friend, family member, or loved one affected by cancer.  This event helps honor those who have the disease, and the money raised goes to cancer research.  It’s a win for everyone.

20100930bricks2606I’d urge you tomorrow to keep the Quad Cam up in a browser window.  You won’t be able to see all of the action, but you can get a sense of what it is like.  There will be a walking lane and a running lane on the Quad, and at 7 pm there will be a final, silent lap to honor those we have lost to cancer (or who are dealing with the disease right now).  Normally after the last lap there are luminaries and a speech on the steps near Wait Chapel.  You won’t be able to hear it but you’ll be able to see it.

If your Deacs are running Hit the Bricks, kudos!  And if yours are not, urge them to go to the Quad sometime between 11 am-7 pm to soak in part of the camaraderie of the day.

PS – The Daily Deac will be part of the ZSR Library team.  I am not a good runner.  My mantra is “not fast, but not last.”  I’ll never be able to hang with these 18-22 year olds who are in the best shape of their life (or some of our competitive staff/faculty teams of real runners), but I’ll represent just the same.   My hope is to be able to do some updates from the Quad when I am not running.  If not, a recap the next day.

Go Deacs!

Tuesday Thoughts

This past weekend was Homecoming – and from all the accounts I heard, it was a beautiful and fun weekend, capped off by a win over Army.  This was the first Homecoming I had missed in ages, but I was still with a lot of Wake Foresters, as my niece (’05) was getting married and was surrounded by her WFU friends.  You can catch up on some of the action via Tagboard, which compiles some of the best of Homecoming as seen via social media.

There are a couple of events that students may want to take note of and attend.  These are activities that might expand your students’ minds and perspectives, or help them exercise Pro Humanitate.  Feel free to share these and discuss with your Deacs:

- The World Cultural Festival is this Friday, September 26th.  ”The sound of West African drums and laughter will fill the airwaves and the scent of food from around the world will tantalize your taste buds as you anticipate the first bite at the Office of Multicultural Affairs’ 6th Annual World Cultural Festival.  The much anticipated event will take place on Friday, September 26, 2014 at 5:30 pm-8:00 pm on Manchester Plaza (rain location: Benson 401). World Cultural Festival is free and open to the entire campus community.”

israeli palestinian conflict- Israeli/Palestinian Conflict: A Forum for Understanding will be held Thursday, October 2 7:30-9:30 pm in Wait Chapel.  There will be a panel discussion of expert WFU faculty, faculty emeriti, and chaplains.  This sounds like it will be a very strong program, and might help your students understand some of the complex issues at the intersection of politics, religion, and geography.

- Project Pumpkin will be held October 29th, 2014 from 3-6 pm on the Quad and in Wait Chapel.  This is an amazing community day where our students come together to create a carnival atmosphere for local students to have a safe place to trick-or-treat.  Students can volunteer as an escort to take children around campus to trick-or-treat in the dorms, carnivals, and haunted houses.  They just sign up, come to a training meeting, and then show up on the day of Project Pumpkin!  Students must attend one training meeting in Wait Chapel:  October 22, either 7-8 pm or 8-9 pm, or October 23, 6-7 pm or 7-8 pm.

- Every Tuesday at 11:50 am, there is a ”Together Tuesdays” photo on the steps of Wait Chapel. “We stand for Unity & Respect,” they say on the Z Smith Reynolds Library Facebook page.  This was started – I think – as a collaboration between Faculty Fellows and the ZSR Library.  Last week there were only about 10-15 people in the photo.  When I went up there today, there were tons more folks.  This is available to all on campus, so we welcome students interested in unity and respect to join us.  You can compare and contrast the first two pictures at the end.

Finally, this one is more about you, parents and families.  Midterms and access to grades: there is a new system in place for parents to have access to their students’ grades.  The old paper forms that were on file in the Registrar’s office no longer exist.  Instead, there is an online Proxy Access process where students can choose to share grade and other information with their parents or other designees.  The student is the one who has to grant access – so if it is important to you to be able to see midterm grades etc., you need to talk to your student about granting you proxy access.

Together Tuesdays 1 together tuesdays 2

 

Support the Arts at WFU – These Shining Lives

Here’s another programming note for your students.  We have an incredibly talented University Theatre, and the Daily Deac is a huge fan.  We have a production opening this week and running through the end of September, and we want to encourage your students to go and show their support for the actors, directors, scene painters, costumers, and every one in the WFU Theatre family who make magic happen on stage.

Details below.  There is also a beautiful brochure about the 2014-15 season.

THESE SHINING LIVES20140909theatre0634 by Melanie Marnich

Directed by Cindy Gendrich

7:30 pm September 19-20 & 25-27, 2014

2:00 pm September 21 & 28, 2014

In the 1920s and 30s, “girls who wanted to work” could get good-paying jobs painting the radium dials on watch- and clock-faces. Part fairy-tale, part tragedy, These Shining Lives chronicles the stories of these “radium girls,” and their life-changing friendships. A luminous play about curiosity, greed, heroism, health, time, money, and hope.

The picture at right shows (from left), Wake Forest students Alyssa Gera, Johanna Beach, Natalie Brashear, and Hayley Greenstreet.

 

First Signs of Fall

For today’s Daily Deac, I took a stroll around campus up through one of my favorite spots, Reynolda Village and Reynolda Gardens.  It is a superb day – high 70s and sunny, light breeze.  Perfect weather.

On the Quad, various student organizations have made banners for Homecoming, which is this weekend.  They are hanging on Kitchin Hall (and probably the others too, I just didn’t make a full lap).  The banners really are more the size of bedsheets, with slogans and images painted on them.  A couple of very good looking Deacons painted on them.  Alas, no pictures – there were students sitting at the cafe tables there and they looked to be studying, and I did not want to get in their personal space to take some photos of the banners.

You can see the first hints of fall as you look at the trees across campus.  Most of the trees are still vastly green, but you can see some of the leaves are starting to turn yellow, or red, or orange.  It’s a small percentage of any given tree that is changing colors, but as the next few weeks unfold, the ratio of green to fall colored leaves will change dramatically.

I also saw a few yellow leaves blowing off the trees in the wind.  One of my favorite times on campus is when it is really and truly fall, and a brisk windy day – then you see leaves coming down like a ticker tape parade of old.  I can’t wait to go walking when those days start.

Your students are seeing a lot more cars on campus this weekend because of Homecoming.  It’s also the weekend where our Board of Trustees and our Alumni Council are meeting.  There are a lot of cars parked on Davis field for these events, and they’ll be more tomorrow when the classes of 1964 (who are being inducted into the Half Century Club), 1969, 1974, 1979, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, 2004, and 2009 return for their reunions.  We’ll have alumni coming to Homecoming from other years too, but we celebrate official class reunions in 5 year increments.  You can see the Homecoming schedule online - and get a sense of the kinds of things your Deacs will be invited to in a few short years.

I passed Davis Field, the library, and the science buildings and headed down to the path toward Reynolda Village.  Reynolda Village is always lovely this time of year.  The walk from campus to the village is mostly through the woods, so it is nice and cool and shady.  It was a lovely walk.  Always better when you are walking it with a friend.

If you are coming to campus for Family Weekend, I highly recommend you take this stroll.   There are good options for lunch there (Silo, Village Tavern, and more) as well as good boutique type shopping.

Start hoping now for weather like today’s to repeat for Family Weekend.   And if your students aren’t getting out and enjoying this fine weather, urge them to take a study break and take a walk outside.  It’s good for the body, mind, and spirit.

 

Remembrance

9 11 14 signToday is a somber day on campus, the anniversary of 9/11.  The Pro Humanitate Institute has done a beautiful visual display on Manchester (aka Mag) Quad today, with tiny flags commemorating those who passed away that day.  There is also a series of service opportunities for students to take part in if they wish to.   For all our students, faculty, staff, parents, and families who are feeling this anniversary in personal ways today, our thoughts and prayers are with you.

9 11 14 flagsOn a much lighter note, I was in the Benson Center and there were signs for a number of other campus activities coming up.  This weekend is Awake All Night, with the theme of Wakeopoly.  This event is run by Student Union and is always a wonderful way for 9 11 14 awake all nightcampus to come together and have a ton of fun in Benson after hours.

9 11 14 hip hopThe Hip Hop Fellow series is tomorrow, and there are a ton of good opportunities to learn and enjoy some well-known artists and speakers.

Tonight is the Secrest Artist Series event.  Broadway’s Next Hit Musical, which is billed as an improvised musical that is based on audience input.  It sounds incredible.  Urge your students to go.   Performances are free for students and there are two shows: 7:30 and 9:30 in Brendle Recital Hall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thrive

We were busy all afternoon Friday so never got you a Daily Deac, but wanted to bring you a recap of the Thrive event.  It was hot, but so much fun.

20140905thrive6694The lower quad (Manchester, aka Mag Quad) was transformed with a public art piece – it looked like the leaf on the Thrive logo, with different colored sections.  There were tables with color coordinated tablecloths to represent each type of wellbeing, with big flags denoting that particular wellbeing area, and activities and food at each station.  You can see pictures from our great photographer, Ken Bennett, at this Flickr site.  There’s also a news story on our main web page.

20140905thrive7254Two of my colleagues who work in the ZSR Library and I were charged with manning the Intellectual Wellbeing table.  We had two different activities people could do:  one was to fill out a card that reflected on something intellectual (a favorite professor or class, the last big idea that really excited you, favorite book/movie/artwork/piece of music, etc.) and then pin the card onto what looked like a big clothesline.  It was so interesting to see people’s responses.  Lots of great and inspiring books, and skills people wanted to learn (evidently we have a lot of budding musicians among our students).  Maybe the most gratifying thing was that some students wrote the name of a professor or class that meant the world to them – and some of the professors actually came by later and got to see these anonymous tributes.  One of them told us “this made my day!”

The other activity at our table was posters people could sign to pledge to do something this semester for their intellectual wellbeing.  They were things like ‘attend an on-campus cultural, artistic, or academic event,’ or ‘pledge to engage in more diverse conversations with people who are different from you,’ or ‘read a book/watch a documentary that has nothing to do with class,’ that sort of thing.

20140905thrive7233It was really gratifying to see how many students, faculty, and staff came to our Intellectual Wellbeing table.  I’d worried our traffic would be slow because some of the other tables had much sexier activities – there was Play Doh, bubbles, and puppies at Emotional Wellbeing, there were chair massages at Physical Wellbeing, there was a wonderful drum circle and meditation at Spiritual Wellbeing, Financial Wellbeing had a tree outline where you could dip a leaf shaped sponge in paint and add a leaf to the tree you wanted to save money for (retirement, vacation, etc.).  Lots of the other dimensions had similarly cool activities.  And at each table there were different buttons you could collect to remind you of that dimension of wellbeing – all with cool slogans and neat graphics.

20140905thrive6818So it was a well turned out event for sure and lots of traffic.  It was beastly hot, though.  Around 4:30-5 pm, there started to be some ominous looking clouds, and around 5ish it started raining for real, and thundering, so the party had to break up early.  For those of us working the tables, it turned into an after-hours close-down party in the rain, trying to lug tables and pick up leaves and generally getting a good soak.  Even that was OK – it was a great example of Wake Foresters from all offices and levels pitching in to do a job that needed doing.  And that is one of the things I love best about Wake – there are always people there to help you when you need it.

20140905thrive6723Great job to all our Thrive organizers, and I hope all the students have some good takeaways for ways to nurture all the areas of their wellbeing.  Not just now, but to keep in practice for good.