American Studies Conference is Feb. 27-28, Write Well microlectures are a Buzzfeed hit, Three Macalester alums' video about N.D. oil boom featured on New York Times website, Sarah Graves '04 is Macbassador of the Month, and more...
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Mac Wire

January 2014

The e-newsletter for Macalester alumni, parents, and friends.

The year that was


Macalester professors Karín Aguilar-San Juan, Michael Zis, Jim Laine, Patrick Schmidt, Raymond Robertson, Wendy Weber, and Nadya Nedelsky share perspectives on some of the top news stories of 2013.
Read their picks

In This Issue

American Studies Conference is Feb. 27-28

Write Well microlectures are a Buzzfeed hit

Three Macalester alums' video about N.D. oil boom featured on New York Times website

Lucy Forster-Smith is leaving Mac

Join the Macalester Alumni Reader Project

Jeffrey A. Hassan and Eric Mahmoud discuss closing achievement gap on Feb. 13

Macbassador of the Month: Sarah Graves '04

Class Notes

Share Your News
Read Past Editions
Manage Subscription

Video of the Month
Watch Video
First-Year Reflections

Recent Photos
View Photo Gallery
Fall Semester 2013
in 12 photos

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American Studies Conference is Feb. 27-28

Artwork by Ricardo Levins Morales

This year's American Studies Conference, Mixed Race America: Identities and Culture, features talks by Laura Kina, Vincent de Paul Associate Professor of Art, Media, & Design at DePaul University, and Ralina L. Joseph, associate professor in the University of Washington’s Department of Communication and departments of American Ethnic Studies and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies.

Everyone is welcome. Keynote presentations are 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 27, in the Alexander G. Hill Ballroom of Kagin Commons.
See conference details

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Write Well microlectures are a Buzzfeed hit


Macalester's Write Well video series is one of two recommended resources for the 17th suggestion on Buzzfeed's list of "24 Invaluable Skills To Learn For Free Online This Year."

The Write Well series was created by Professor Adrienne Christiansen and the Jan Serie Center for Scholarship and Teaching and features microlectures from 25 Macalester faculty and staff on various writing topics. The Write Well page received more than 7,000 visits thanks to the Buzzfeed publicity.
Read Buzzfeed story

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Three Macalester alums’ video about N.D. oil boom featured on New York Times website

Three Macalester alumni made "Running on Fumes in North Dakota," an Op-Doc featured on The New York Times.

An excerpt from a documentary by Macalester alumni James Christenson ’11, Eliot Popko ’11, and Lewis Wilcox ’12 is featured as an Op-Doc on The New York Times website. Last fall, they won a video competition sponsored by The New York Times, which led to their documentary being featured.

The short is a part of their "Project NoDak" study. They've been working for the past 18 months on an as yet untitled feature-length documentary, which is still in production.
Read our Q&A with the filmmakers

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Lucy Forster-Smith is leaving Mac


After 20 years as Macalester's Chaplain, Lucy Forster-Smith will be leaving to accept the position of Sedgwick Chaplain and Senior Minister of the Memorial Church at Harvard University. Lucy will assume her new position early in spring semester.

"Macalester has given me a chance to contribute in untold ways both to students, faculty, staff, and the wider Twin Cities community but also to receive so much as well," she says. "I will always hold Macalester's light in my soul and I leave with gratitude, joy, and abiding love for my time as Chaplain.  I leave with bagpipes ringing in my ears!"

Join us in wishing Lucy farewell: Macalester's Center for Religious and Spirtual Life is gathering alumni, students, parents, faculty, and staff well-wishes and memories for her via this form.

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Join the Macalester Alumni Reader Project

Ideal for:
Alumni around the world looking for a one-on-one connection with a current student.

When to apply:
By Friday, Feb. 14

Interested in environmental justice, sustainable development, civil rights and/or Nabokov? Catch up with current scholarship on campus and help students improve their writing skills by participating in the Macalester Alumni Reader Project (MARP). You don't need to live near campus to sign up—in fact, most of alumni readers live outside Minnesota and use Skype/Google Hangouts to meet with their students.

This spring four courses are participating in MARP:

  • Environmental Justice
    taught by Chris Wells, Environmental Studies/American Studies
  • Sustainable Development and Global Future
    taught by Professor Roopali Phadke, Environmental Studies/International Studies
  • U.S. Civil Rights and Civil Liberties
    taught by Clare Ryan '08, Political Science
  • Nabokov
    taught by Julia Chadaga, Russian/English

Sign up to serve as an Alumni Reader

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Jeffrey A. Hassan and Eric Mahmoud discuss closing achievement gap on Feb. 13


Jeffrey A. Hassan '73 and Eric Mahmoud, co-authors of the book Best in Class, will lead a panel discussion with key individuals in the field of education and present their findings at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, in the John B. Davis Lecture Hall of the Campus Center. Their book was featured in the CNN Special Report Black in America: Great Expectation, exploring methods being used to close the achievement gap with black youth.

Learn how a group of charter schools are having a positive influence on the education of black youth in North Minneapolis. "Not only are Harvest Prep and Best Academy educating at-risk children, they’re educating these children to the highest levels of academic achievement," says Hassan. "In 2011 and 2012, the reading and math state standardized test results at Harvest Prep and Best Academy were on par with Minnesota’s most affluent suburbs, with its math results being more than 40 percent higher than the statewide average."

This event, sponsored by Alumni Relations and Macalester's Black History Month committee, is open to the public.
Add event to your calendar

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Macbassador of the Month: Sarah Graves '04


In recognition of her continued commitment to the Macalester community, Sarah Graves '04 is our January Macbassador of the Month.

Sarah, who majored in Communication Studies at Mac, is the athletics admissions coordinator for the Macalester Athletics department and an assistant coach for the varsity volleyball team on which she used to play. Her dedication to the Macalester community continues well outside of business hours. She is also a back-to-back Reunion volunteer, having served on the Alumni of Color Reunion planning committee last year as well as on her 10-Year Reunion planning committee this year.

"There are just so many energetic, smart, funny, creative and generous people involved in this place. Why wouldn't you want to connect with and support them?" said Graves. "Many of these students, alums, faculty and staff still push me today to think more critically and do better in all the activities with which I am engaged. I support Macalester because I feel my time as a student and athlete helped me define how I wanted to be as a person in the world and I want to give as many current and future students that opportunity."

Not only does Sarah support Macalester with her work and volunteer time, she also is a Summit Society donor our students can count on year after year.

Please join us in congratulating Sarah Graves '04, our January Macbassador of the Month.
Be a Macbassador

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Class Notes

These alumni have recently posted class notes in MacDirect, our online community for alumni (login to view):

Ellen Elias-Bursac '74
Monday, January 13, 2014

Rebecca Duenes Cuellar '03
Sunday, January 12

Jane Buchmiller Zimmerman '84 (2)
Saturday, January 11

Thomas H. Frost '71
Saturday, January 11

Theodore D. Clement '06
Monday, January 06

Michael W. Skoien '73
Monday, January 06

David M. Bolt '79
Monday, January 06

James W. Ochi '80
Monday, December 30

Kristen A. Harkness '02
Friday, December 27

Rhodri C. Williams '92
Friday, December 20

Nelly A. Provencal-Dayle '11
Thursday, December 19


Walter F. Hatch '77
Friday, December 13

Lisa Bosveld Jamila-Wuerth '91
Friday, December 13

Junita Gustafson Bognanni '03
Friday, December 13

Nancy A. Wilson Schlei '80
Thursday, December 12

Licinia R. McMorrow Iberri '04
Thursday, December 12

Jeannine E. Stearns '88
Thursday, December 12

Allen J. Smart '83
Thursday, December 12

Thomas J. Libby '58
Thursday, December 12

Samantha R. Ross '07
Thursday, December 12

What's your news? Post your class note in MacDirect and a link to it may appear in the next edition of Mac Wire.
Share your news in MacDirect

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6:30 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 23
Join London area alumni for cocktails and conversation
University Women's Club, 2 S. Audley St., London

5:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 24
Enjoy an evening with Mac students in New Orleans
Café Dauphine, 5229 Dauphine St., New Orleans

2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25
Attend the Annual Alumni Track and Field Meet
Field House, Leonard Center athletic & wellness complex

7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28
Join Twin Cities alumni to discuss City of Thieves
Hosted by Emily Seddon '08

6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7
Macalester College Pipe Band Winter Open House
Macalester-Plymouth United Church, 1658 Lincoln Ave., St. Paul

7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13
Best in Class: Closing the Achievement Gap with Black Youth
John B. Davis Lecture Hall, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center

7 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 13
Discuss Every Monkey for Themselves with Portland area alumni
Hosted by Paul Freeman '71

11:30 a.m. Tues., Feb. 18
Gary Krueger Inaugural Lecture - Cargill Professorship in International Economics
John B. Davis Lecture Hall, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center

4:45 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20
Theodore Mitau Lecture, featuring Alfie Kohn
Kagin Ballroom, Kagin Commons

7:30 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 20
7:30 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21
2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Feb. 22
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui
Main Stage Theatre, Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center

7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25
Join Twin Cities alumni to discuss Empress
Hosted by Everett Beek '06

6 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 27
American Studies Conference "Mixed Race America: Identities and Culture"
Alexander G. Hill Ballroom, Kagin Commons

9 a.m. Saturday, March 1
Canine Health Seminar: Day One with Dr. Jean Dodds, DVM
John B. Davis Lecture Hall, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center
Please view flyer for registration information.

9:30 a.m. Sunday, March 2
Canine Health Seminar: Day Two with Dr. Ron Schultz, DVM
John B Davis Lecture Hall, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center
Please view flyer for registration information.


Ad: Mongolian Adventure: August 6-21
Join the alumni travel program for our next trip to Mongolia, Aug. 6-21. Email Daymond Dean for details.





Mac in Social Media...
Many alumni, parents, and friends connect with Mac via social media. Do you?

MacDirect: 9,843 users
Facebook: 9,403 fans
Twitter: 5,715 followers
LinkedIn: 4,409 members
Google Plus: +487
YouTube: 296 subscribers




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Mac Wire is an e-newsletter for alumni, parents, and friends of Macalester College, 1600 Grand Ave, St. Paul, MN 55105