Macalester College
Mac Wire

January 2009
Past Editions

Alumni College Summer Session 2009
to focus on Islam and the Middle East

Photo: Kahldoun Samman

Professor Khaldoun Samman, Sociology, serves as dean of the Summer Session.


The Alumni College, a series of intellectually engaging programs for alumni and friends of the college, recently released the program for its 2nd Annual Summer Session. This year's session will take place August 2-5 and focus on Islam and the Middle East. Participants will explore the traditions and tenets of Islam and its continuing influence on the boundaries, political movements, and cultures of the modern Middle East. The session's faculty will include professors and staff from Macalester and other colleges. Registration for Summer Session opens in February.
· Explore the Summer Session itinerary
· Read bios of the session's faculty


In this edition:

Campus News

Alumni News


Campus News

Jenna Machado '12 and her suicide prevention group profiled nationally

Photo: Jenna Machado

For her work in creating the peer education group Colie's Closet, Jenna Machado '12 appeared in two feature articles last month -- one in the nationally distributed Parade Magazine and the other in the Boulder Daily Camera. The three-year-old group strives to prevent teen suicide by training young people as peer educators and sending them to Boulder-area schools. The group also helps young people access no-cost and low-cost counseling when they need it. Machado told the Camera that she hopes to start a similar program in Minnesota while the group in Boulder continues to expand into a neighboring school district.

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Professor Emeritus W. Scott Nobles dies at age 85

Photo: W. Scott Nobles
Dr. W. Scott Nobles taught speech and communications at Macalester from 1969 to 1997.

Professor Emeritus W. Scott Nobles died Dec. 24 after prolonged complications from a series of strokes.

As the DeWitt Wallace Distinguished Professor of Speech Communication from 1969 to 1997, he taught popular courses in advertising and speech. He also was director of the college's forensics program. Under his leadership, the Macalester speech team consistently ranked in the top-10, winning two national championships.

His students remember him as an excellent mentor and dynamic teacher. His classes were always in demand and were universally recommended. In election years, there was a waiting list for his "Politics and Persuasion" course in which he used the themes of current political campaigns as the template for instruction. Nobles was an educator without peer.

To honor Nobles work, the Dr. W. Scott Nobles Scholarship was presented in 2004. It is awarded to a Macalester student with good academic standing who demonstrates financial need and participates in the forensics program. In lieu of flowers, gifts can be made to this scholarship via Macalester's secure online form. A memorial service honoring Nobles is planned for Reunion 2009, June 5-7.
· Read the obituary at

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Annie Flanagan '09 sets two Scots diving records

Photo: Diver Annie Flanagan

Annie Flanagan '09 set two Macalester records when she took first in both the 1-meter and 3-meter diving events during the MIAC dual meet with St. Olaf on Jan. 10 hosted at the Riley Pool in the Leonard Center. Her scores of 267.45 for the 1-meter and 288.30 for the 3-meter are NCAA Division III national qualifying marks.
· Read a full recap of the Jan. 10 meet

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Alumni News

The San Francisco Bay Area Steps Forward

Macalester College became the center of attention for the more than 170 alumni and friends of the college who attended the Step Forward event in San Francisco on Friday, Jan. 9. The evening's program kicked off with a showing of a student video and included talks by Step Forward campaign chair Jerry Crawford '71, Wes Alcenat '10, Beth Neitzel '03 and President Brian Rosenberg.

Photo: Walt Disney Concert Hall
The Walt Disney Concert Hall in L.A. is the location for the next Step Forward event on Sunday, Feb. 8. Photo courtesy of the Music Center of Los Angeles County.

The next Step Forward event takes place at noon on Sunday, Feb. 8, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in L.A. The event is hosted by John Law '72 and Hope Warschaw, Edward ('77) and Carol Miller, Stanley and Reiko Moe, Steven Kaplan P'12 and Janet Levine P'12. Events are also planned for Phoenix, Washington (D.C.), Boston, Seattle and London. To RSVP for upcoming Step Forward events email Karlyn Wegmann.
· View photos from the San Francisco Step Forward event »
· Step Forward by making a gift to the Annual Fund»

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Professor Ferderer gives alumni lecture about recession

Photo of Waul being selected for Rhodes Scholarship
Economics Professor J. Peter Ferderer will talk about the recession on Thursday, Jan. 29.

While it may be impossible to predict when the current U.S. recession will end, it is certainly a good time to learn more about the causes of economic turmoil and our prospects for the future. Alumni and friends of the college are invited to explore these topics at an Alumni College Faculty Lecture led by Professor Peter Ferderer, Economics, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 29, in the John B. Davis Lecture Hall of the Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center.

Ferderer will present, "Is the economy heading for a depression? A Minskian Perspective," in which he will reflect upon the work of the late Hyman Minsky, an economist whose theories have been discussed widely in publications like The Wall Street Journal, The Economist and The New Yorker in light of current economic events.

The Alumni College will present two more faculty lectures during spring semester, one on the armed conflict in Gaza and another on the environment.
· Details about Peter Ferderer's Faculty Lecture

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Alumni invited to kayak the San Juan Islands together

Photo:San Juan horizon

A summer alumni trip is planned for July 16-19 that will take alumni to the San Juan Islands for a sea kayaking adventure. Experience the fun of sea kayaking and camping on a remote island accessible only by boat. Paddling around the islands, participants can expect to have close, but respectful encounters with Orca and minke whales, seals, porpoise, river otter, bald eagles and 290 species of birds during a leisurely tour. Email Carol Polk for more information.

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Minnesota offers Macalester-branded license plates

Photo of Waul being selected for Rhodes Scholarship
An illustration of a Macalester plate. The real thing would have a number like "BA000."

When it comes to announcing your pride for Macalester from your car, loud speakers are a hassle, window decals work okay and bumper stickers will do the job in a pinch. But, the ultimate way to show off your alma mater are Macalester-branded license plates. If you're a Minnesota resident in the market for new plates, you can order Macalester-branded ones for an extra $48.50, $25 of which is a contribution to a scholarship fund maintained by the state. The donated money is distributed to participating colleges and universities based on the number of plates each one has in circulation.
Learn more at »

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Jan. 18 -  Sunday
11:30 a.m.

MacReads San Francisco
The home of Siobhan Boylan '02, Oakland, Calif.

Discuss the book Hot, Flat and Crowded by Thomas Friedman with Bay-area alumni. Email Aleena Oberthur '05 or Mindy Lechman '05 to RSVP and receive directions.

Jan. 23 - Friday
7:30 - 9:30 a.m.

President Brian Rosenberg speaks in Naples, Fla.
Naples Beach Club House, River of Grass Ballroom, 851 Gulf Shore Boulevard North, Naples, Fla.

President Brian Rosenberg speaks about myths in higher education at the Naples Beach Club House. A breakfast buffet will be served at 8 a.m. and President Rosenberg will address the group at 8:30 a.m. The Naples Beach Club House is located across the street from the Naples Beach Hotel. The breakfast is open to the public and costs $19 per person, paid at the event. RSVP to Stephanie Mulcahey.

Jan. 29 - Thursday
6-8 p.m.

Twin Cities Class of 1984 Preunion
Chambers Hotel, 901 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis

Chill out with the Class of '84 at the Chamber Hotel's Ice Bar in preparation for the Class of '84 25-year reunion this June. Guests and alumni of neighboring class years are welcome. After the happy hour, those who are interested will hear Big Head Todd at First Avenue. Email Sherry L. Johnson '84 for more information.

Feb. 3 - Tuesday
7 p.m.

Advancing the status of women in Afghanistan
On Campus, Weyerhaeuser Memorial Chapel

Founder and director of Afghan Institute of Learning, Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, and president of Americans for UNFPA, Anica Rahman, discuss work being done to advance the status of women in Afghanistan. Presented by Macalester College, Americans for UNFPA and the Minnesota International Center.

Feb. 11 - Wed.
7 p.m.

Stars, Studios, Gowns and Gossamer: The Oscars
On Campus, Olin-Rice 250

Join a conversation with Star Tribune film critic Colin Covert '74 in a review of this year's Oscar candidates and an examination of our national obsession with the awards. How can films as different as Slumdog Millionaire and The Dark Knight compete for the same prize? How do the roles actors choose affect their chances of nomination? How do actual Academy members make their choices? Explore these questions, and your own, while watching key sequences from nominated films. Email Stephen Sporer to RSVP.

Feb. 20 - Friday
6 p.m.

First Relay For Life at Macalester College
On Campus, Leonard Center, Field House

All alumni, students, faculty, family, and friends are invited to participate in celebrating the lives of those who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost to the disease, and raise money to fund cutting-edge cancer research, early detection and prevention education, advocacy efforts and life-affirming patient services. Email Adam Freedman '12 or Maggie Hutchison '12 with questions.
· Start or join a team at

Feb. 20 - Friday
6 - 7:30 p.m.

American Studies Conference: Whiteness in the Age of Obama
Kagin Commons, Alexander G. Hill Ballroom

Cheryl I. Harris and David R. Roediger deliver the keynote address for the 10th Annual American Studies Conference. Harris presents 'Tracing Race in Colorblind Spaces.' Roediger presents 'Whiteness as Management: Race and Capitalist Control of Production in the U.S. Past and Present.' Email Kathy Scott for more information.






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