UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Rebecca Adams, the Grateful Dead and 1,000,000+ Deadheads

Photo of Rebecca Adams and UNCG students, summer 1989When UNCG professor Dr. Rebecca Adams sees all three big “Fare Thee Well” concerts of Grateful Dead members in Chicago’s Soldiers Field, it will hardly be her first. She heard Jerry Garcia, the lead guitarist for the Grateful Dead, play with the band about 100 times before he died in 1995 and has heard the remaining members of the Dead play together many times since then.

Her first Grateful Dead show was in 1970. Since then she has become well-known for her sociology research of the Grateful Dead fanbase – known for decades as “Deadheads.”

The “Fare Thee Well: Celebrating 50 Years of Grateful Dead” concerts on July 3-5, 2015, will be the Grateful Dead members’ final performance together. It’s a milestone for Deadheads.

Adams, professor and Gerontology Program director at UNCG, has been one of the foremost scholars on the Grateful Dead fans – known as Deadheads – since the 1980s.

She is co-author or co-editor of five books, including “Deadhead Social Science: You Ain’t Gonna Learn What You Don’t Want to Know” (2000) with Robert Sardiello, a graduate of UNCG’s Sociology MA program), “Placing Friendship in Context” (1998) and “Adult Friendship” (1992), as well as many scholarly articles and book chapters, including nine on Grateful Dead fans.

Her research areas include:

  • Aging
  • Friendships/community
  • Music fans  (mostly the Grateful Dead community)

These days, these three research areas have dovetailed, as the members of the Deadhead community are getting older. Many are in their 60s and 70s. One person calls her work “jerry-ontology,” she says.

“A conservative estimate of the number of Deadheads is over a million,” she says. “Most Deadheads tend to be professionals – they like to say ‘we are everywhere’ and that is accurate.”

When she taught a UNCG class in 1989 on the Deadheads – and took her students on a research field trip that involved observations at eight concerts and parking lot interviews – she and her students became a media sensation, throughout the US and even in England. Today, sociological study involving pop culture is commonplace, she notes.

“Now, popular culture is an established field. But back then I was written up in the Congressional Record as “a symbol of the decline of higher education.” She notes that she remains grateful to former UNCG Chancellor Moran for defending her right to study and teach about the Deadheads.

Things changed and the world has caught up to her academic research.

“Now people see me as a pioneer.”

She continued what she calls her “more respected research” on friendships of older adults. But she knew her sociological research on music fans, specifically the Deadheads, would be valued someday. She has written or co-written many academic pieces on Deadhead research – and written pieces and been interviewed for the popular press as well. From Rolling Stone to London publications to the LA Times.

Now, as the Grateful Dead members play their final shows, she is fielding more media requests.

How did she get tickets, if they sold out immediately? It was good karma, she believes. “I waited for ‘the community’ to function like it’s supposed to. I waited and waited.” She could have used connections, but waiting was the karmically-correct way, as she explains it. A co-author found he could not use the tickets he bought, so she purchased them. “$1,390 – that’s why I’m teaching summer school, so I can afford them.”

She’ll also attend the Dark Star Orchestra show in Chicago July 2. She used to host some of the “tribute” band members at her home.

She taught the UNCG course “Aging and Music” this spring; she plans to teach it again. Faculty from all over campus participated in it and loved it, she notes.

The Chicago shows will feel like a homecoming in many ways. She attended the University of Chicago, receiving an MA from there in 1977 and PhD from there in 1983, both in Sociology. She began her teaching career an adjunct at several Chicago-area schools including Roosevelt University, Elmhurst College, Barat College and Indiana University Northwest.

She began her longstanding career at UNCG in the fall of 1983.

How did the Deadheads become an academic specialty for her in the 1980s? One UNCG student in particular convinced her to pursue it, she explains. His name was Matt Russ, known to many people today for his Tate Street Coffee House, which gives a sense of community to many at UNCG.

  • Want to hear more? She will give a Gerontology Research Outreach Workforce and Teaching Hub (GROWTH) presentation – “Music, Aging and Well-Being: Deadheads and Other Babyboomers” on Sept. 30, noon-1:15 p.m. in Edwards Lounge, Stone Bldg., UNCG.
  • See a four-minute excerpt from “Deadheads: An American Subculture.” The 1990 film was narrated by Adams and produced by Dr. Emily Edwards (UNCG Media Studies).

By Mike Harris

Photo of Rebecca Adams and UNCG students, summer 1989, used with permission of photographer © Lloyd Wolf / www.lloydwolf.com  All rights reserved.

UNCG Police Building, Spartan Village get LEED Silver

Photo of Lee Residence Hall with student crossing the streetSustainability efforts at UNCG have received more recognition.

The new UNCG Police Building and Spartan Village Phase 1 were both certified as LEED Silver this month. The university received the notification from the U.S. Green Building Council, which manages the LEED certification standards.

“UNCG has made tremendous strides in our efforts to become a more sustainable institution over the last six years,” said UNCG Sustainability Coordinator Trey McDonald. “Besides ensuring that new construction strives to meet the latest standards to reduce its environmental footprint, we have other ongoing efforts that involve every aspect of campus life.”

Sustainability has been one of the university’s key strategic initiatives since 2009, when trustees made it one of UNCG’s five core values. Traditionally sustainability has three dimensions: the environmental stewardship, social equity and economic responsibility. UNCG’s definition includes a fourth element, aesthetics, which takes into account the importance of integrating sustainability into the arts and using that as a way to influence behavior change.  In addition, aesthetics also relates to the beautification and preservation of the campus environment, which has been demonstrated the Grounds Division and their work to secure Tree Campus USA status six years running for UNCG.

2015 Student Affairs Staff Awards

Photo of Shaw Residence Hall with student walkingThe recipients of the 2015 UNCG Student Affairs Staff Awards were honored at the division’s year-end celebration in late May.

Here are the recipients, along with an excerpt from what was stated at ceremony:

Partnership Award:
Beyond Academics
Since the first students from Beyond Academics moved into campus housing in fall 2014, their staff has gone above and beyond to make this process successful. They’ve trained Housing & Residence Life on inclusive language and behaviors, have been quick to respond to questions/concerns, and shown a firm commitment to a successful residential experience for their students.

Team Player:
William Parrish (Elliott University Center)
As director of the Elliott University Center, William works with departments across campus to ensure that the details of their events are complete and handled with great attention. It’s not unusual to see him doing everything from answering phones to assisting set-up crews. William is a positive ambassador for the Division in every project in which he is involved.

Unsung Hero:
Eric Alston and Wayne Michaux (Housing & Residence Life)
As the second shift fix-it team, these two have made significant contributions to UNCG’s culture of care. They go above and beyond to handle overnight issues to provide a safe and secure living environment to students.

Graduate Assistant of the Year:
Lisa Santiago (Career Services Center)
As a graduate student in Career Services, Lisa stepped up to manage the Student Employment Process on her own after professional staff changes. She also developed, implemented, and managed a formal program for our UNCG Guarantee students and initiated a new mentoring program for UNCG students.

Employee of the Year:
Ericka Smith (Office of Leadership & Service Learning)
Ericka’s energy and optimism have gone far beyond the leadership programming for which she was hired. She has made tremendous connections across campus, and under her management the Leadership Challenge Program has experienced exponential growth. She is a masterful facilitator, popular and demanding teacher of for-credit courses, exceptional curriculum design specialist, and organized administrator.

UNCG’s Pedestrian Underpass receives Star Award

Photo of entrance to Pedestrian UnderpassAt the 2015 Annual Construction Professionals Network (CPN) Conference, UNCG’s Pedestrian Underpass received the Star Award for Best Project under $20 million category.  The project had already received the ENR Southeastern Award and the AGC Pinnacle Award.

CPN of North Carolina, Inc. is a statewide organization of business and professional leaders who are involved with design, construction and related services.

The UNCG Pedestrian Underpass, built to run underneath the railroad tracks from Oakland Avenue to West City City Boulevard, opened April 2014. The underpass connects Spartan Village, a residence hall complex on Lee Street, with the main part of campus.

The tunnel is 170 feet long and cost about $10 million to build. It was a joint project of UNCG and the N.C. Railroad Co.

More about the award-winning features of the project may be viewed at this recent North Carolina Construction News feature.

Awards at UNCG College of Arts & Sciences

Group photo of award winnersSeveral faculty members in the UNCG College of Arts and Sciences have received major awards from the state. They are:

Cardinal Award
Carl Goldstein (Art) – 44 years of service

Order of the Long Leaf Pine
Joshua Hoffman (Philosophy) – 41 years of service
Terrance McConnell (Philosophy) – 38 years of service
William Markham (Sociology) – 34 years of service
Margo Bender (Languages, Literatures & Cultures) – 36 years of service

Order of the Long Leaf Pine and Caswell Award
D. Gordon Bennett (Geography) – 48 years of service

The Cardinal Award, given by the governor, is newly created and was introduced July 1, 2014. This award is specifically designated for public servants who have spent thirty or more years in state or local government. The Order of the Long Leaf Pine requires a minimum of thirty years, significant community service and demonstrated excellence in service. The Richard Caswell Award Program, established in January 1998 for state employees with 45 or more years of service, is designed to acknowledge and express appreciation for noteworthy extended dedicated service.

The College recognized four other retiring members as well, Lori Kerr notes:
Lynn Bresko (Development) – 17 years
Paul Duvall (Mathematics & Statistics) – 28 years
Kathe Martin (Biology) – 10 1/2 years
Elizabeth Walker (Women’s and Gender Studies) – 9 years

6-TECH will soon be 24/7

UNCG’s ITS Service Desk (6-TECH) will offer 24 hours a day, 7 days a week service, as of July 1.

This enhanced service is being offered to respond to the needs of UNCG’s increasing number of online students, who may be doing coursework at any hour of any day, says Vice Chancellor Jim Clotfelter.

This initiative is being accomplished without any new funds coming to ITS for this purpose.

“By providing additional training for ITS Service Operations and Support staff, we will now be able to give round-the-clock tier 1 technical support to UNCG faculty, staff, students and potential students,” says Sherry Woody, who is leading this initiative in ITS. “My staff has worked hard to prepare and we are excited to be part of this initiative.”

6-TECH was created to provide the university campus community with a single point of contact for technology support. In keeping with the ITS Vision Statement, anyone in the campus community can call one number, 336-256-TECH (8324), and get immediate technical support from the 6-TECH Service Desk  – or be directed to the proper support personnel on campus.

If they prefer, they may email 6-TECH@uncg.edu.

UNCG, WCU partner on new Communication Sciences & Disorders Ph.D program

A partnership announced last Friday by The University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Western Carolina University is designed to replenish the dwindling national numbers of Communication Sciences and Disorders (Speech Language Pathology and Audiology) doctoral graduates.

The doctoral training program, dubbed Inter-institutional Distance Education Agreement for Learning and Leadership in Communication Sciences and Disorders (IDEALL CSD), will begin in January 2016.  It is available to full and part-time students.

In a 2007 national survey (Hull, 2007) of 143 university graduate programs in speech-language pathology and audiology, 90 percent responded that they were experiencing a shortage of available doctoral-level personnel to fill new or vacant faculty positions; 93 percent stated they were expecting the shortage of available doctoral-level faculty to continue for the foreseeable future.  Further, 55 percent indicated that they were experiencing difficulty attracting applicants for new or vacant doctoral-level faculty positions.

“The shortage is driven by a number of factors,” said Dr. Denise Tucker, associate professor and chair of the Department of Communications Science and Disorders at UNCG. “A large number of early and late retirees; more attractive employment opportunities for doctoral-level personnel in the private sector; and a lack of Ph.D students entering and graduating from doctoral programs. This shortage of CSD doctoral students is a nationwide problem.”

UNCG’s Communications and Science Disorder (CSD) Department has a long-standing, nationally ranked SLP Masters program, and in Fall 2007, their graduate program added the doctoral program.

Dr. Robert Mayo, professor and director of Graduate Studies for the UNCG CSD Ph.D program, will oversee the IDEALL CSD program at UNCG, and Dr. Billy Ogletree, Professor and Head of Western Carolina’s Communication Science and Disorders Department, will oversee the program at WCU.

Students should be able to complete the program in five to seven years.

By Joe Gallehugh
Full story at UNCG Now.

UNCG’s Coleman Fellows advance entrepreneurship education

For the sixth year in a row, Dianne Welsh, director of the Entrepreneurship Cross-Disciplinary Program at UNCG, has received a Coleman Foundation grant to name three new Coleman Entrepreneurship Fellows and 12 Veteran Entrepreneurship Fellows.

The UNCG professors are named Coleman Entrepreneurship Fellows and will receive grant funding to help them create a new entrepreneurship course or revise an existing course to include entrepreneurship.

The new Coleman Fellows are:

  • Keith G. Debbage, professor of geography. He will revise an urban planning course to include entrepreneurship.
  • Janice I. Wassel, associate professor of gerontology. She will revise a course in silver industries (businesses that serve older adults) to include entrepreneurship.
  • Bonnie Yarbrough, adjunct lecturer in English. She will revise the Writing in the Professions course to include entrepreneurship when applying communications strategies in the workplace.

The fellows are each awarded $4,000, to support their entrepreneurship-focused teaching efforts. All fellows have doctoral degrees.

UNCG is one of 19 universities nationally to receive funding for the program from the Chicago-based Coleman Foundation. The Coleman Foundation has contributed more than $500,000 to the cross-disciplinary entrepreneurship program since it started awarding grants at UNCG.

“The Coleman Fellows program has been instrumental in helping UNCG develop a cross-disciplinary environment of entrepreneurship in the classroom and through various extracurricular activities,” Welsh said. “The Coleman grant helps faculty expose students to entrepreneurial ideas and teach them about self-employment and entrepreneurship.”

The academic entrepreneurship program has won six national and international awards, including the Best Emerging Program in the United States by the U.S. Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship and the Freedoms Foundation Award for Excellence in Free Enterprise Education.

In addition to the new Coleman Fellows, several faculty members were also named Coleman Veteran Fellows. Veteran Fellows are those who have been named Coleman Fellows previously. As fellows, have access to a national network of other Coleman Fellows and resources, such as opportunities to attend conferences. They also receive $2,000 that can be used for entrepreneurship education and serve as members of the Entrepreneurship Cross-Disciplinary Council at UNCG.

The Veteran Fellows are:

  • Stoel Burrowes, assistant professor of interior architecture
  • Bonnie Canziani, associate professor of hospitality and tourism
  • Steve Cramer, business librarian and associate director of the Coleman program at UNCG
  • Duane Cyrus, associate professor of dance
  • Donna Duffy, assistant professor of kinesiology
  • Cathy Hamilton, director of the Office of Leadership and Service-Learning
  • David Holley, professor of music
  • Bill Johnson, student success coordinator in the School of Health & Human Sciences
  • Sharon Morrison, associate professor of public health education
  • Cedric Pearce, adjunct professor of chemistry
  • Chris Thomas, lecturer in art
  • Dianne Welsh, professor of entrepreneurship
  • Jennifer Yurchisin, associate professor of consumer apparel and retail studies

For information on the entrepreneurship program, visit http://entrepreneurship.uncg.edu.

Perrill, Williams, Yarbrough are i3@UNC Fellows

The University of North Carolina Office of Learning Technology and Innovation has announced the selection of 28 fellows to participate in the second annual Instructional Innovation Incubator (i3@UNC).

UNCG’s fellows, who attended a summer workshop earlier this month, are Elizabeth Perrill (Art History), Kathy Williams (HHS) and Bonnie Yarbrough (English). Details are at http://www.northcarolina.edu/?q=news/2015/03/fellows-announced-2015-i3unc-workshop

The i3@UNC program supports UNC system faculty in the development of new online and blended courses that expand educational opportunities and improve student learning outcomes. Faculty participants are designated i3@UNC Fellows. Fellows work under the guidance of state and national experts in instructional technology and design to develop new online and blended courses. The program fosters a system-wide community of faculty innovators in teaching and learning.

Improving Road Sign Program for NC’s agritourism industry

Photo of highway sign for Laurel Gray, Windsor Run, Shadow Springs and Raffaldini wineriesA state-run road signage program has played a key role in connecting tourists with North Carolina’s booming wine and grape industry, which supports nearly 8,000 jobs and creates an annual economic impact of $1.71 billion. While there are some concerns about the program, most stakeholders involved in the N.C. Agricultural Tourism Directional Signage Program (NCATDSP) believe the program is unique and effective for participant wineries, leads to increased visits and is vital for the growth of the industry, according to a new UNCG study.

However, the program could be more efficient, and recommendations for making that happen are included in the new study by a team at the UNCG Bryan School of Business and Economics.

The UNCG research team reviewed 21 different road sign programs in 10 states as part of its study of the NCATDSP, which was created by the N.C. General Assembly in 1999 to make it easier for tourists to find wineries and related businesses. The N.C. Wine and Grape Council and the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services funded the report.

Among the report’s main recommendations:

  • Currently, the signage program is jointly co-administered by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDA&CS) and the N.C. Department of Transportation. Coordination between the two agencies should be improved to avoid confusion for wineries applying to post a sign.
  • The terms “winery” and “wine” are currently not allowed to be used on signs in the N.C. Agricultural Tourism Directional Signage Program even if “winery” is part of a business’ full name. Many other states, including California, New York and Virginia, permit the terms to be used on signs. North Carolina should look into allowing these terms to be used in the NCATDSP to help with overall branding of the industry.
  • Wineries pay the full cost of building and posting road signs, with such signs in North Carolina among the most expensive in the 10 states that were studied. Fees for interstate signs range from $25,000 to $50,000 and must be paid in full up front, which is challenging for smaller wineries. Staggered payment programs, industry-backed subsidies and insurance programs for repairing or replacing damaged signs should be explored.

UNCG Bryan School professor Joy Bhadury, associate professor Erick Byrd and executive in residence Samuel Troy authored the report, which is the latest of several that UNCG research teams have done over the past several years about various aspects of the state’s wine and grape industry.

Triad Stage, UNCG Theatre team for ‘Common Enemy’

Actors rehearsing for the upcoming production of Triad Stage’s production of the new play, Common Enemy.UNCG’s The Globe and the Cosmos series is going out with a slam dunk.

Triad Stage presents “Common Enemy” June 7-28. Preston Lane, artistic director at Triad Stage and a head of the directors’ program at UNCG Theatre, has taken an Ibsen classic and created a very modern tale set squarely in North Carolina.

Basketball on tobacco road. Whistle-blowing both on the court and off. Multi-media. Scandal. Reputations in the balance. Core university values in the balance, as well.

It’s looking to be the most innovative, timely and provocative production the theater has staged.

“First of all I want to go on the record that I love both college basketball and free speech,” Lane says. As for what spurred the play, which he wrote and is directing, he says that Triad Stage Board Chair Alan Tutterow said he wished he’d update Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People to present-day Greensboro. And other things spurred him. “It might have started when Peter Alexander, dean of the (UNCG) School of Music, Theatre and Dance, and I talked about producing Bertolt Brecht’s A Life of Galileo as part of UNCG’s “Globe and Cosmos” year-long conversation about Shakespeare and Galileo. Or perhaps it started when current Board Chair Kathy Manning asked why there are so few plays set in the contemporary South.”

This one is as contemporary and as political as it gets. “My ideal political theater doesn’t tell us what to think; it asks us to examine why we think what we think we think.”

The Triad Stage summer production is a collaboration with UNCG Theatre. Of the 15 actors in the cast, eight are UNCG MFA candidates in their 20’s, 30’s or 40’s. Two others are UNCG alumni. Many behind the scenes are UNCG professors or alumni.

Michael Tourek, who portrays Star Robbins, is entering his second year in the UNCG Theatre MFA program.

“The first Triad Stage show I ever saw was “Brother Wolf.” As it ended, he turned to his wife, Sara Geffert. and said, “I will work at this theatre.” His first show was another Preston Lane / Laurelyn Dossett collaboration, “Beautiful Star.” The cast included former UNCG Music master’s student Rhiannon Giddens. People still stop him on the sidewalk and say, “You were that guy in Beautiful Star!”

His wife completed the UNCG Dance master’s program – which had drawn them to Greensboro. He continued his relationship with Triad Stage and got his bachelor’s at UNCG. He’d already been acting for 20 years. Inspired by the many theatre professionals involved in Triad Stage and other companies and also at UNCG Theatre – such as Denise Gabriel, Jim Wren, Christine Morris – he entered the UNCG MFA in Acting program. “They’ve pushed me even further – to own by craft.” As a result, he’s never felt so confident as an actor, he explains.

He and his family have put down roots in Greensboro – that is, when he’s not flying out to do TV or film.

His role on the ABC series “Resurrection” expanded over the last two years. His acting credits – and his Equity card – are proof of his professional chops.

Ben Baker, another Equity actor who’s a UNCG MFA student, plays a professor who has tough decisions to make and advice to give.

“Everyone’s a hypocrite. Everyone lives in ambiguity – whether they know if or not,” Baker says in explaining the “thought-provoking” play. The creative process for the actors has been very open, he says.

Baker earned his Equity card 16 years ago in a Sir Peter Hall Shakespeare repertory at Los Angeles’ Ahmanson Theatre. He’d gotten his Acting BFA at New York City, but wanted a “full, broad theater education.” He saw that with specialists like John Gully, Jim Wren, Chris Morris, Jim Fisher and Denise Gabriel on the faculty at UNCG Theatre, the university was the right place at the right time in his career. He heads into his final year at UNCG, and he plans to be an actor in a large city after that.

He lauds the collaboration between Triad Stage and the UNCG Theatre. It’s rare for a theater and a university to have such strong relationship, he explains. It’s remarkable that all of his classmates are in the same production, alongside professionals from New York City and beyond. “All eight of us – it’s a tremendous thing.”

Tourek also praises the collaboration with UNCG and the opportunity the professional productions give to all of the students. “You’re expected to be a professional.” Some of them already are, with Equity cards in hand. The rest are on their way.

To see more information and to purchase tickets, visit triadstage.org/series/168/common-enemy.

By Mike Harris
Photography by Martin Kane

UNCG’s new Art Truck hits the road

Photo of students and professor looking over the Art TruckIn early May, a vibrant truck appeared outside UNCG’s Gatewood Studio Arts Building. Adorned on its sides read slogans such as “Project One Art” and “Reach In, Bring Out,” with abstract recreations of the famous Greensboro skyline.

This former U-Haul, now the “UNCG Art Truck,” appeared again on June 5, as a part of Greensboro’s monthly “First Friday” celebration downtown. It was filled with art for the public to view.

What makes the UNCG Art Truck such an impactful idea is that it brings together the community and university students. This takes the traditional gallery form, and mobilizes it for the community.

The UNCG Art Truck is an art piece itself: open to interpretation, conversation and formulating ideas amongst each other. The truck’s conception, as explained by Art Department Head Lawrence Jenkens, comes from a suggestion by faculty member Mariam Stephan, who wanted to put a garden shed on a trailer and use it for art shows. Akin to any creative process, the initial idea metamorphosed into its current purpose: transporting art beyond the campus and into the community.

Through the work of a UNCG “think tank” class led by Chris Thomas, Travis Hicks and Stoel Burrowes, the UNCG Art Truck is packed with symbols representative of the Triad community. The truck’s exterior, designed by UNCG Art professor Amy Purcell’s independent study students, stimulates the mind. Jenkens explains that the art is actually drawn from a map. There’s literally more in this art than meets the eyes.

By Christina Blankenship
Photograph courtesy UNCG Art Department


Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis swoops over UNCG

Photograph of Spirit of St. Louis at Greensboro’s Lindley Field, Oct. 14, 1927, courtesy Greensboro Historical MuseumLook up, above the campus. It’s a bird. It’s a plane … It’s the Spirit of St. Louis, piloted by Charles Lindbergh.

The celebrated plane, with Lindbergh alone in the cockpit, had been the first to cross the Atlantic Ocean non-stop. Lindbergh left New York on May 20, 1927, and touched down in Paris on May 21. He and the plane were instantly famous.

Lindbergh sailed low over the UNCG campus on Oct. 14, 1927 – a thrilling sight no doubt. He also rode through the UNCG campus, perched in an open convertible.

“N.C.C. Gives Lindy a Hearty Welcome” the Carolinian headline proclaimed.

UNCG was then known as “The North Carolina College for Women” – NCC or NCCW for short.

Fall 1927 was an exciting time for the campus. Architect Harry Barton’s new auditorium at the corner of Tate and Spring Garden provided plenty of seating for October 5 Founders Day – and the students suggested they add a ceremony at the McIver Statue as well, the Carolinian reported. It also reported that contracts were bidded out for several new buildings, including Mary Foust and Guilford Residence Halls and a home economics building that is now the oldest part of Stone Building, facing Walker Avenue. (Barton, featured in last week’s Campus Weekly, designed each of them.) Old Curry had burned the previous year, but new Curry Building, also designed by Barton, had opened.

The year was momentous for the city as well. Greensboro had just opened War Memorial Stadium, a monument to the area men who had died in the War to End All Wars. The new stadium (also designed by Barton) allowed about 20,000 to hear Lindbergh speak. People came from southern Virginia and throughout North Carolina to see the man Governor McLean introduced as “perhaps the greatest hero of the age.” (Daily News, Oct. 15)

He landed his plane at the newly opened Lindley Field – now known as Piedmont Triad International Airport. Many thousands greeted him there. A focus of his Greensboro visit, which generated a lot of press coverage, was the importance of aviation. During his brief remarks at the stadium, the former airmail pilot predicted there’d soon be a surge in airmail and even passengers in the United States, as more airfields would be built and enhanced. “For this reason I want to to bring before you the importance of backing and standing behind the aviation progress that has been inaugurated in Greensboro,” he said, according to the Oct. 15 Daily News.

A historical marker at the airport notes Greensboro’s airport becoming part of the Eastern United States’ air mail route a few months later. Air transportation in Greensboro continued to blossom over the decades – and is one of the Triad’s key industries today.

Before landing at the Greensboro airfield, he circled the city three times, the third so low “the markings on the great aircraft could be easily read,” said the next day’s Greensboro Daily News. Actually, Lindbergh buzzed the UNCG campus twice that day, judging by the Nov. 1927 Alumnae News: “Previous to landing at the airport and just before leaving the city, Colonel Lindbergh circled low over the campus in the ‘Spirit of St. Louis.’”

The Oct. 15 newspaper corroborates this account, saying he made a “pleasing final gesture” of – instead of flying straight to Winston-Salem, his only other North Carolina visit on the tour – taking time to fly again over Greensboro that early afternoon.

And the UNCG students got a close-up look as Lindy rode through campus in an open convertible.

“The Famous Aviator Smiles and Salutes as He Passes Through City” proclaimed the Greensboro Daily News.

He would donate his plane to the Smithsonian the following year, after 174 flights.

Lindbergh died four decades ago. But the repercussions of that October 1927 day – for the city of Greensboro and the Triad aviation industry – live on.

In a future CW: part 2. UNCG community lines the banks of Walker Avenue through the campus to welcome Lindbergh; alumni statewide revel in aviation theme in wake of Lindbergh’s visit.

By Mike Harris
Photograph of Spirit of St. Louis at Greensboro’s Lindley Field, Oct. 14, 1927, courtesy Greensboro Historical Museum.

Sources: Greensboro Daily News newspapers week of October 1927, courtesy Greensboro Public Library. November 2017 Alumnae News and October Carolinian student newspapers courtesy UNCG’s Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives / Digital Collection. “Lindbergh” by A. Scott Berg, 1998. “Lindbergh Alone” by Brendan Gill, 1977. Historical marker’s full text may be viewed at http://www.historicalmarkerproject.com/markers/HMKM6_lindley-field_Greensboro-NC.html. Thanks to GHM Archivist Elise Allison for providing photography from that day.

UNCG Honors College students and their articulate dragons

Photo of Olivia Wood from RomeWho knew that dragons could compose such great blog posts? Or take selfies – Do they even have an opposable thumb?

It’s a little like “Flat Stanley” – but these are unique UNCG dragons. Each UNCG Lloyd International Honors College student going abroad names their red, plush fellow traveler. And in the blog posts, they let the dragon do the talking.

Olivia Wood (or, I should say, her dragon Khaleesi) last week took us to the Roman Coliseum and Pompeii. She is part of the UNCG in Rome study program. It seems that he got into a scuffle with another plush dragon at the Coliseum, but what do you expect from dragons hearing lots of tales of gladiators? The students, on the other hand, are taking in lots of history. And discovering the joys of a tasty 2-euro Roman breakfast.

The little dragon tells us, “Olivia (that’s my human) likes seeing all the places where people like Julius Caesar and Romulus used to live.”

UNCG has been a North Carolina leader in study abroad for decades.

The LIHC mascot is the Welsh Dragon, Y Ddraig Goch, the blog intro notes. “There Be Dragons” refers to the Latin phrase “HC SUNT DRACONES (here are dragons), used on maps centuries ago to indicate uncharted waters.

A great summer activity at UNCG is sitting back and being an armchair traveler – reading the students adventures and learning around the world.

UNCG’s honors program goes back to the 1940s. It was named for Rebecca Lloyd in 2006

Read this story and see pictures – and enjoy other posts – at http://lihcdragonblog.blogspot.com/.

Find out about more study abroad opportunities at https://www.uncg.edu/ipg/sae/study_abroad_exchanges.html.

By Mike Harris

‘Tatted Up’ – Think before you ink

A UNCG Residence Life program has received national recognition from the National Association of College and University Residence Halls. This is believed to be the first time a UNCG program has received this recognition.

The program was called “Tatted Up” and was presented to students in the Moore-Strong Residence Halls in order to teach students about how to make a safe, healthy decision about body modifications (tattoos and piercings).

First-year students often come to college and begin to experience new cultures, academic pursuits, and personal realizations. It is commonplace for a Residential Staff Life member to hear of residents going out to get tattoos and body piercings, sometimes on a whim. “While we, as staff members, recognize that a student’s first year is an impactful and exploratory time, and that we are in a position of support rather than judgment, we also realize that we have a prime opportunity to arm our residents with the only tool that can be used without our physical presence in a decision of this magnitude: knowledge,” their materials say.

The speakers in the presentation were staff members who had tattoos, piercings, or some combination of the two, which provided residents with credible information sources. There was research done to create the presentation as well.

“As Residential Life staff members, we are in no way able to make decisions for our residents, nor are we required to do so,” their materials noted. “However, we are a part of residents’ lives to care about them and to provide them with resources and information that they can use to make rational, beneficial decisions to their future success.”

UNCG Police in Unified Torch Run for Special Olympics

Group photo of UNCG Police staffUNCG Police were part of the national Unified Torch Run for Special Olympics, on June 4.

The relay is delivering the Flame of Hope from Washington, DC, to Los Angeles for the Special Olympics World Games in July. The UNCG Police department team – named G Force – raised $1,515 for Special Olympics. Thirteen took part in the 2.5 mile run. They picked the torch up on Spring Garden Street and ran it through campus and eventually turned it over on Friendly Avenue, noted Lt. Steve DeDona. The department has raised money for Special Olympics for the past several years.

The torch is on display in the UNCG Police Building.

UNCG alumna Jenn DeBeers, a route manager for the Special Olympics torch run, helped organize their run.

Picture may be viewed at http://unifiedrelay.smugmug.com/South-Route

Visual courtesy Twitter feed.

UNCG Athletics receives APR scores; three teams with perfect scores

The UNCG athletics department had all 17 teams receive satisfactory marks in the latest Academic Progress Report (APR) scores released by the NCAA. The scores reflect the multi-year APR scores for the 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2013-14 academic years.

“We are pleased that our programs are continuing to excel academically,” UNCG Director of Athletics Kim Record said. “We had six teams above the national average, including three teams with perfect scores, which is something to be proud of.”

The three perfect scores of 1,000 were by men’s indoor track, men’s outdoor track and men’s cross country. Additionally, men’s basketball (976), men’s golf (983) and volleyball (994) were listed above the national average.

The men’s cross country, indoor track, outdoor track teams were honored last month by the NCAA with the APR Public Recognition Award for the fourth straight year. The award recognizes the teams in the top 10 percent of all Division I programs in the respective sports.

Additionally, the Spartans had eight teams with perfect 1000 scores for the 2013-14 academic year and 11 teams above the national average that year alone.

The APR provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester or quarter by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete. The APR includes eligibility, retention and graduation in the calculation and provides a clear picture of the academic culture in each sport.

Full story at UNCG Athletics site

UNCG project with Hayes-Taylor YMCA digitizes Greensboro history

Do you have a piece of Greensboro’s history in your possession? Something that tells your story, or that of your family or neighborhood? A photograph? A document? A letter?

If so, bring it along as you come to the Hayes-Taylor YMCA to see what the Achievers Program there has been doing to learn about – and save Greensboro history in digital form so that it can be seen and used by future generations.

On Saturday, June 20, from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., at the new YMCA building at 2630 E Florida Street, UNCG students students in the Achievers Program who have been participating since February in a project to collect and digitize Greensboro history will hold a free event to show others what they’ve been doing. There will be a multi-poster display of some of the interesting and important historical materials that have been discovered since February.

The “Digitizing Greensboro History” staff and students also invite the public to bring a cherished letter, document or photograph (individual, family, an older image of Greensboro or perhaps their neighborhood, or images of Greensboro “back in the day”), and let them digitize it on the UNCG University Libraries “Community History” site. These items will be digitized that same day and returned, and copies will be sent to the individuals. The digitized items will later be placed on the UNCG University Libraries “Community History” website at http://libcdm1.uncg.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/Community, which is part of the Digital Projects unit at UNCG’s Jackson Library.

Representatives of the UNCG Libraries and Hayes-Taylor YMCA’s Achievers Program will also be present to answer questions. Among these are UNCG grads Felton Foushee, director of the Achievers program, and facilitator Achievers program coordinator Eugenia Brown of the Hayes-Taylor YMCA, who are working with David Gwynn and Stephen Catlett of the University Libraries at UNCG on the project.

For more information about the project, see: http://uncgdigital.blogspot.com/search/label/Hayes-Taylor

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Updated 10 a.m. June 10.

Dr. Franklin Gilliam will be UNCG chancellor

Photo of Dr. Franklin Gilliam Jr. being welcomed into the Alumni House for the receptionDr. Franklin Gilliam Jr. stepped out of his car. And into a large,  welcoming crowd of Spartan faculty, staff, supporters and students.

The UNCG Spartan Orientation Staff students have been preparing to welcome a big incoming freshman class.

On May 22, they were first in line on the steps of Alumni House to welcome UNCG’s new chancellor.

Gilliam was introduced by Trustees chair and Search Committee chair Susan Safran. He had been elected to be UNCG’s 11th chancellor earlier in the day at the UNC system Board of Governors meeting.

Gilliam has been dean of the Luskin School of Public Affairs at UCLA since 2008. Gilliam has focused on establishing UCLA Luskin as a leader in finding solutions to society’s most pressing problems – from juvenile justice to drug policy, from child welfare and health care reform to transportation and the environment.  He also secured a $50-million naming gift for the school and has launched new campaigns to elevate its mission of public service. Under his leadership, it has launched major administrative and educational initiatives ranging from an ambitious centennial fundraising campaign and strategic planning initiative to programs in global public affairs, leadership, digital governance, and inequality. The school’s active research centers include the Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies, the Institute for Transportation Studies, the Center for Policy Research on Aging, the Luskin Center for Innovation and, coming August 1, the new Institute on Inequality and Democracy.

A native of Bloomington, MN, Gilliam earned a bachelor’s degree in political science (1977) from Drake University and holds master’s (1978) and doctoral (1983) degrees in the field from the University of Iowa. Early in his academic career, he taught at Grinnell College and the University of Wisconsin-Madison before joining the UCLA faculty in 1986 as an assistant professor of political science. Twice nominated for UCLA’s Luckman Distinguished Teaching Award, Gilliam also has taught at the University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, and was a Visiting Scholar at Brandeis University. In addition, he taught at Fisk University, Middle Tennessee State University, and with former Vice President Al Gore at Columbia University.

Gilliam will assume his new duties Sept. 8. Dr. Dunn, provost and executive vice chancellor since summer 2014, will continue to serve as acting chancellor until that time.

See more at special web page.

See excerpts of Gilliam’s remarks at the welcome reception.

‘Proud to be the newest Spartan’

Photo of Dr. Franklin Gilliam speaking during reception“It is a great honor to be elected the 11th chancellor of The University of North Carolina at Greensboro,” Dr. Franklin Gilliam said in addressing the roomful of well-wishers in Alumni House May 22. He was accompanied by his wife Jacquelean Gilliam, executive director of Scholarships & Student Support Initiatives and Campus-wide Initiatives at UCLA. He acknowledged Susan Safran and the hard work of the search committee; the ongoing work of Acting Chancellor Dana Dunn; and the work and initiatives of former chancellor Linda Brady.

Some excerpts from his remarks:

  • Greensboro is a wonderful city. The region’s vibrant, and we are thrilled about that. We intend to become fully active active members of the community. It’s a community you can throw your arms around.
  • There’s no doubt in my mind that UNCG is well-positioned for continued success …. Enrollment is on the rise, academic excellence is fostered by a very accomplished faculty; the university is consistently recognized for being among the top universities at the intersection of excellence and value ….
  • This is a critical time for American higher education and, in particular, for public higher education. How will we continue to deliver a high-quality education experience for our students while the business model is changing beneath our feet? As you know, across the country, states are dis-investing, if you will, in public higher education. This troubles me of course because, as probably most of you in this room know, the prosperity of states like North Carolina or California or Wisconsin are directly attributable to the institutions of higher learning in those states and the human capital that is producing the highest quality and the skills which (drowned out by applause).
  • We have to continue to find even more innovative ways to prepare students of all ages and backgrounds for meaningful lives. This is a really interesting tension between how do we prepare the students to enter the workforce and have the right kinds of skills, on the one hand – and how do we also prepare them with a true liberal arts education?
  • Being able to draw on a pool of a skilled labor force is critical to the future success of the companies, and we have to meet that challenge – but we also have to create thinking, intellectual beings. We have to produce young people who are engaged in a discussion of the critical issues of the time – who understand what it means to be a citizen, both here in Greensboro but also in the world.
  • As many of you know, UNCG contributes over a billion dollars annually to the region – and as such it must be a robust and engaged civic stakeholder.
  • (He spoke about the Woman’s College history and the campus’ longstanding values.) I think we always have to honor that legacy. On the other hand, I think also have to look forward. We have to look to the future and see how we can collectively – all of us – work towards a better tomorrow.
  • I am proud to be the newest Spartan …. Together, only together – none of us can do this alone. It’s the students, it’s the faculty, it’s the staff, it’s the alumni, it’s the donors, it’s the volunteers, it’s the other stakeholders in the community – this is the only way this thing works …
  • We’re thrilled to be joining this community. We’re excited – we’ve been sneaking around Greensboro the last couple of months. We had to change into civilian clothes for a chance to meet prospective parents and ask students how they enjoyed it here. So now I can actually walk around … (drowned out by laughter and applause). It’s together, and only together, that we will redefine and forge UNCG as a leader in 21st century public higher education.


UNCG ready for SOAR 2015

Photo of parents and students from a past SOAR eventSpartans are preparing to welcome a new class of first year students.

Spartan Orientation, Advising and Registration (SOAR) starts June 4, with eight freshman sessions and two Transfer and Adult sessions during the month.

SOAR will pick up again in August with two more Transfer Adult sessions and one more Freshman session before Rawkin’ Welcome Week begins.

All new freshmen will receive a copy of ““Where Am I Wearing?: A Global Tour to the Countries, Factories, and People that Make Our Clothes” by Kelsey Timmerman.  That is the Keker First Year Common Read book this year.

“We currently have at least 237 more freshmen and at least 222 more transfers confirmed than this time last year,” said Dr. Kim Sousa-Peoples. “We have seen the greatest growth in our in-state applications, but we are still up slightly for out-of-state students.”

As you see students and their family on campus in the coming weeks, don’t hesitate to say Hello and make our new Spartans feel welcome.

Abstracts from undergraduates due for International Conference of Undergraduate Research

Photo of College Avenue with students walkingStudents have several more days to submit proposals to a global conference to be held here at UNCG.

UNCG will be one of the host sites for the 3rd Annual International Conference of Undergraduate Research (ICUR) on September 28-29, 2015.

Abstracts from undergraduates are due May 31, 2015. Register here.

In September, students and attendees will gather in one of UNCG’s classrooms equipped with virtual technology to participate in the conference.

This endeavor is an informal collaboration with the University of Monash in Australia and bolsters UNCG’s Global Engagement emphasis.

This will be the first online undergraduate research conference for UNCG and any other campus in the state.

The conference provides an international experience via an interactive virtual experience.

Questions? Contact the Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creativity Office at ursco@uncg.edu.

UNCG’s 2015 Cram and Scram sale

Photo of front of the Elliott University CenterEverything will be two for a dollar, at the 2015 UNCG Cram & Scram sale Saturday, May 30, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the EUC’s Cone Ballroom.

The sale is open to the public.

Expect to see lots of items commonly found in dorm rooms – clothing, shoes, desk furniture, miscellaneous decor, electronics, lamps and books.

Each item is sold at a flat rate of 50 cents. The price is not designed to bring in large amounts of revenue but instead to encourage community members to reuse these items that still have lots of life left in them.  The sale is cash only (correct change appreciated).  There will be free parking at Walker Ave. Parking Deck but no assistance will be available to haul purchased items to people’s cars.  The money generated at the sale funds environmental learning opportunities on campus.  The leftover items are donated to Goodwill.

Questions? Call Ben Kunka at 334-5192.

The sale is hosted by the UNCG Office of Waste Reduction & Recycling.

The 11th chancellor in UNCG’s history

I got a note Friday questioning whether “11th chancellor” is accurate. This provides a great opportunity to explore our history – and to verify that the statement is in fact accurate.

The first two campus leaders, McIver and Foust, were not called “chancellor” – the title was adopted in 1945, apparently. And two leaders were relatively short-term, interim chancellors: Debra Stewart and W.W. Pierson. Dr. Dunn has served as acting chancellor (while also serving as provost and executive vice chancellor).

When Dr Linda Brady was installed, she was installed as our university’s 10th chancellor (and of course, we were not known as a “university” till the mid-1960s, when Woman’s College became UNCG.) So there is a lot of cloudiness and opportunity for confusion, as titles have changed, the campus’ name has changed several times, etc. Aside from short-term interim chancellors, here are the ten full chancellors (even if known by another title) that our campus has known as of May 2015:

Mr. Charles D. McIver (received honorary doctorates)
Mr. Julius I. Foust (earned Ph.B degree)
Mr. Walter C. Jackson (received honorary doctorates; first to be called “chancellor,” in final years of his tenure)
Dr. Edward K. Graham (first UNCG head administrator to earn doctorate)
Dr. Gordon Blackwell (first to have any type of investiture ceremony)
Dr. Otis Singletary (declined a ceremony)
Dr. James Ferguson (first large investiture ceremony, a tradition that continues: Fred Chappell spoke, a Class of 1894 alumna was on hand)
Dr. William Moran
Dr. Patricia Sullivan
Dr. Linda Brady

Our campus will welcome Dr. Franklin Gilliam Jr. on Sept. 8 as its 11th chancellor.

By Mike Harris
Note: If you’re interested in campus history, please click the links. The links will provide you further information and show CW’s sources.

At UNCG, beauty and history are all around

Photo of detail from one of many signed architectural drawings by Harry Barton, in Sink BuildingThere’s great art and invaluable history in lots of unanticipated places at UNCG.

This summer, CW will show you some. First, let’s stop by Sink Building – and consider perhaps the most important architect to call Greensboro home: Harry Barton.

I toured his 1927-built home in Hamilton Lakes/Old Starmount
recently, part of a Preservation Greensboro event. He built his home the same year his Aycock Auditorium was built. More than a dozen defining buildings on the UNCG campus were designed by Barton – and, aside from one (a temporary gym seen here in a Spartan Stories post), all have been preserved.

During the tour of Barton’s Greensboro home, I noticed the drawings for the home are displayed by the current owners. Are there any drawings for Barton’s building’s on view at UNCG?


Step up to the reception desk and lobby on the second floor of the Sink Building – and look around. Feast your eyes. History and art come together with each of the antique works – designs for the Chancellor’s House (now the Armfield-Preyer Visitors Center), Curry Building, Brown Building and several others. The details are astounding. Each appears to be initialed by Barton in the bottom right corner.

An architectural guide hosted by NCSU Libraries indicates few of Barton’s drawings still exist. Well, some excellent ones can be enjoyed in Sink Building. Another of the perks of being a part of such a historic campus.

Next week in CW, another spot on campus where you’re surrounded by great art and history.

By Mike Harris
Visual: detail from one of many signed architectural drawings by Harry Barton, in Sink Building

UNCG inspires Candace Robinson’s international ecological studies

Photo of Candace with a non-poisonous black racer snake at the local wetlands site, subject of her undergraduate researchCandace Robinson volunteered with a bunch of fellow UNCG students at the Topsail Island sea turtle hospital, camping through a storm.

But it’s hardly the most unusual biology field experience she’s had. That came during a UNCG student exchange experience to Australia a year ago.

“I attended James Cook University during my junior year,” she recently said. That experience in Australia changed her career path to one focused on conservation. “James Cook has a leading tropical biology program, and I took nearly all of my upper level biology courses there. The field excursions were incredible. I never thought I would be trapping and surveying animals in the outback in the outback for three days, or trekking through mangrove forests full of spiders and mosquitos.”

“I then applied for the (UNCG Biology) sea turtle conservation course, and was accepted!” she said. “Since then, my life has been forever changed. I have been given the opportunity to join in sea turtle conservation efforts in our state and in August I will be able to say I have contributed in Costa Rica.” A class of UNCG Biology students will study several species of turtles there.

A requirement in the sea turtle course has been to take on a special project with a conservation or environmental theme to be completed in 20-30 hours. “I wanted to do something worthwhile because I knew the experience could be a great opportunity to reference in my quest for grad school.

It became her signature undergraduate research project – helping restore a local wetlands pool.

“I am now part of the restoration team, which includes US Fish and Wildlife officials and a renowned forester. Upwards of 90 hours spent constructing the management plan, attending meetings, and doing hard manual labor on the property, make up the greatest work I’ve completed in my life.”

“With this grand success under my belt, I recently found out I was accepted into graduate school. In September, I will begin my Master’s of Science in the International Environmental Management and Sustainability program offered as a joint degree by James Madison University and the University of Malta.”

Last month, she told lots of kids about conservation, sea turtles and more at the first UNCG Science Everywhere festival. Her experiences in the last two years have changed her life – and she’s ready to make an impact on the world.

“I hope to one day serve on the United Nations Environment Programme board,” she said. “I’m actively working towards my goal of impacting conservation efforts internationally.”

By Mike Harris
Visual: Candace with a non-poisonous black racer snake at the local wetlands site, subject of her undergraduate research

Shred-a-thon 2015 at UNCG

UNCG campus community members have a convenient opportunity for shredding.  On Friday, June 12, at 9 a.m.-1 p.m. you’ll be able to shred paper documents with sensitive/confidential information for free in front of Foust Building on Administration Drive. The mobile shredding truck that will be stationed there is designed to process large amounts of paper on-site; users can even choose to watch the secure destruction on a closed circuit TV on the truck. Confidential materials from your office or home are welcome. This event is limited to UNCG faculty, staff, students and alumni. Help will be available to unload your car. Staples, envelope windows and small paper clips are fine to be included with the material, but no binders will be accepted. Be sure all paper is out of any binders before bringing your material. Use proper lifting technique and teamwork to move paper to the event; paper is deceptively heavy.  Last year about 25,600 lbs. of material was shredded and recycled at this annual event.

For any questions or assistance with getting records to the event please contact Ben Kunka, bakunka@uncg.edu.

Records that have permanent or historical value, based on the approved records schedule, are to be transferred to University Archives. Instructions for transferring records to University Archives are available at http://uncg.libguides.com/university_archives/transferring_to_archives. If you have questions about transferring records to University Archives or the historic value of your records (both paper and digital) contact Erin Lawrimore at erlawrim@uncg.edu.

UNCG is required to comply with the North Carolina Public Records Law concerning the retention and disposition of records. Records are to be disposed of according to University and State approved schedules. The UNC General Records Retention and Disposition Schedule is available at http://its.uncg.edu/records_management/.  If you have questions about records management, contact 6-TECH at 256-8324.

Fresh flags will grace campus

Photo of two banners that will be installed on posts on campus this summerFourteen banner options were floated. Two will fly.

Look for new UNCG banners to grace the campus’ lamp posts soon.

The current banners, which have withstood the elements for several years, were in need of replacement. Staff in Undergraduate Admissions and the Division of Continual Learning created a new set of banners. The two divisions developed an online polling process. Additionally, the options were shown informally to dozens of new graduates at May’s commencement, to get their perspective.

Two options emerged in a very tight race. A design featuring a large Spartan was the overall winner, with 310 votes. Several Minerva designs were popular as well, with the large Minerva design receiving 245 votes. The two designs will be placed strategically across the campus.

Visual: two banners that will be installed on posts on campus this summer

2,400 Spartans turn tassels

Photo of graduates with one graduate holding up a I bleed blue and gold sign during May 2015 commencementApproximately 2,400 students were awarded degrees Friday at UNCG’s Spring 2015 Commencement Ceremony. The event has held at the Greensboro Coliseum.

Of those new graduates, 1,814 received baccalaureate degrees, 474 received master’s degrees, 22 received Specialist in Education degrees and 66 were hooded with doctoral degrees.

Tim Rice, the former CEO of Cone Health, delivered a Dr. Seuss themed commencement address. He was introduced by Acting Chancellor Dana Dunn. Rice was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters as part of commencement ceremonies.

Former chancellor Linda P. Brady and the achievements of UNCG during her tenure were recognized during the ceremony.

Dr. Joseph Starobin (JSNN / UNCG Nanoscience) received the UNC Board of Governors Award for Teaching Excellence.

Student speaker Dickson Ibeh-Kingsley said, “Fellow graduates… today we will leave here separated but forever connected. We will miss all the amazing friendships we have built during our time at UNCG, but wherever life may take us know that despite the distance our roots will remain forever intertwined … because ONCE A SPARTAN… ALWAYS A SPARTAN.”

See the full text of Tim Rice’s commencement address.

See a Filed Under: Features

Reception for our new chancellor will be May 22

Photo of aerial view of the Alumni House and Bell TowerThe University of North Carolina at Greensboro Board of Trustees cordially invites you to a reception honoring UNCG’s 11th Chancellor Friday, May 22, 2015, in the Virginia Dare Room, Alumni House.

A floating reception will be from 4:30 to 6 p.m, with remarks at 5:15 p.m.

Update: New start time is 4:30 p.m. Remarks still are scheduled for 5:15 p.m.

Trustees hear Aycock Auditorium report

Photo of the front entrance to Aycock AuditoriumThe survey results are in. A report has been compiled.

There’s no clear consensus currently on the topic of the name of Aycock Auditorium. But one thing is clear: People want an educational component.

The UNCG Board of Trustees on May 6 heard a presentation by Acting Chancellor Dana Dunn May 6.

Aycock Auditorium, built in 1927, was named for former Governor C.B. Aycock, who served 1901-05. He was known as the “Education Governor.” He had ties to UNCG (when it was known as the State Normal School). While governor, he and President Charles McIver (who had been friends since they were students at UNC Chapel Hill) worked with the Southern Education Board, a group of Southern reformers who advocated for increased support and funding for public education. He visited the State Normal College (UNCG) several times during his years as governor. He spoke at the 1902 commencement ceremony. In January 1904, after a fire destroyed Brick Dormitory (at the site of today’s McIver Building), Aycock came to the college and, along with McIver, spoke at the student assembly the next day. Aycock later worked with McIver to secure funds to construct a new facility.1

Aycock’s white supremacist political leadership and views have received increased attention in recent years and two other universities have removed his name from buildings.

The Aycock Ad Hoc Committee prepared the report, after a semester of research and fact-finding. Dr. Chuck Bolton and Rod Wyatt co-chaired the committee. Two forums were held, and the online survey yield more than 1,000 responses

Dunn presented results from the committee’s survey. As for the question of whether or not the name should be changed, there’s no clear answer from the survey. 52 percent would vote to change the name and 48 percent would vote the retain the name.

Knowing that the university will have a new chancellor this summer – and several new trustees will join the board – Dunn recommended and the trustees decided to move forward with examining the educational aspect of this issue. However, a decision about the name will not be made now; it’s anticipated that the chancellor and trustees will take that issue up later this year.

See the committee’s report at http://aycock.wp.uncg.edu/report.

See the committee’s website at aycock.uncg.edu.

1 Information from Ad Hoc Committee’s website.

By Mike Harris

Betsy Buford, Fred Chappell will receive UNCG’s highest honors

Photos of Betsy Buford and Fred ChappellBetsy Buford has worked to preserve and promote North Carolina’s history and arts. Fred Chappell has spread literary wealth to an international audience.

They will receive UNCG’s top honors.

Betsy Buford will receive the the Adelaide F. Holderness / H. Michael Weaver Award, which honors North Carolinians who have rendered distinguished public service to their community or state. It is named in honor of Adelaide F. Holderness ’34 and H. Michael Weaver of Greensboro.

Fred Chappell will receive the Charles Duncan McIver Award, which recognizes individuals who have rendered distinguished public service to the state or nation. The bronze medal bears the likeness of Charles Duncan McIver, the founding president of the institution that is now UNCG.

The honors will be presented during a ceremony on May 14 at the university.

About each recipient:

Betsy Farrior Buford ‘68 has worked with individuals, legislators and grassroots organizations from Murphy to Manteo with the goal of preserving North Carolina’s history and arts – and promoting social equity. She served as deputy secretary of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources for nine years, 1993 to 2002. She served as director of the North Carolina Museum of History and director of the Division of State History Museums from 2002 to 2007. A history major at UNCG, she had begun her career as a legislative intern on the staff of Congressman L. Richardson Preyer and joined the state’s Division of Archives and History in 1975.

Her many awards include N.C. Federation of Women’s Clubs’ Woman of the Century, the Ruth Coltrane Cannon Award from Preservation North Carolina, Special Recognition for Speaking Out from N.C. Equity/Carpathian Awards, Indies Arts Award from Independent Weekly and the Alumni Distinguished Service Award from UNCG. She was the second recipient of the Bowers Medal of Arts from Friends of the Arts N.C. State University. (Henry Bowers, the award’s namesake, was the first recipient.)

She has served on nearly 50 boards. She has chaired the Advancement Council of The University of North Carolina Press and has served as president of the NC Literary and Historical Association and as president of the Women’s Forum of North Carolina. She has served UNCG in many ways and is currently serving as a director of the UNCG Excellence Foundation for the second time.

A career highlight was her 1996 participation in North Carolina’s first trade mission to Israel. Since 1977, she has been a supporter and volunteer for the American Dance Festival.

Fred Chappell has established a body of acclaimed literary work that few in North Carolina have ever matched. He is the author of a nineteen volumes of verse, four story collections and eight novels.

He has received, among other awards, the Bollingen Prize in Poetry, Aiken Taylor Award in Poetry, T. S. Eliot Prize, Prix de Meilleur des Livres Etrangers from the Academie Francaise, Thomas Wolfe Prize, John Tyler Caldwell Award and Roanoke-Chowan Poetry Prize eight times. He was the Poet Laureate of North Carolina from 1997 to 2002.

His impact on the world of letters is seen not only in his books but in the many students who have gone on to successful writing and teaching careers.

A native of Canton in the mountains of North Carolina, he taught at UNCG for more than 40 years and helped create the MFA in Writing program. A recipient of the UNC system’s highest faculty honor, the O. Max Gardner Award, Chappell held the Burlington Industries Professorship from 1987 to his retirement in 2004.

By Mike Harris

Love sea turtles, will travel

Photo of students rinsing off sea turtleNeither rain nor storms nor darkened skies could keep a group of UNCG Biology students from the coast the last several days.

They left on Mother’s Day to volunteer at a sea turtle hospital. They camped. They will return today (Wednesday).

UNCG has a longstanding connection with the hospital, officially called the Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center. Students and employees volunteer regularly.

UNCG Biology senior lecture Ann Berry Somers leads the groups. She taught a course on sea turtles this spring – and will teach a summer course in which UNCG students will travel to Central America to study a rich variety of sea turtles and conservation techniques. “We leave for Costa Rica on Aug. 1 and return on Aug. 9 and will be working with the researchers at the Phipps Biological Station,” Somers said.

UNCG has many students involved in conservation work – locally and around the world – whether with polar bears, birds, plants, sea lions and of course sea turtles. UNCG Campus Weekly and UNCG Now news site will profile a few of the many students in coming weeks.

By Mike Harrid
Archive visual from an earlier year at the sea turtle hospital

UNCG undergraduate researcher goes to Capitol Hill

Photo of Merritt and Westervelt are joined by an exoneree wrongfully convicted of killing a prison guard, as Merritt makes poster presentationUNCG honors student Tiffany Merritt and her mentor, Dr. Saundra Westervelt of the UNCG Department of Sociology, took their research to Capitol Hill last month. Merritt’s honors project, titled “Addressing the Aftermath of a Wrongful Conviction in North Carolina: Policy vs. Practice,” examines the implementation of the North Carolina compensation policy for NC exonerees. Her research reveals that only 44 percent of NC exonerees actually receive compensation.

The project was one of 60 from across the country selected from over 500 applications for the annual “Posters on the Hill” event sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research. Merritt and Westervelt traveled to Washington, D.C. April 22-23, where they discussed their work with two U.S. senators and the staffers for a third senator and two U.S. congressmen. They also met with White House staffers from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) is dedicated to supporting and promoting high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship. CUR’s Posters on the Hill is a national showcase that emphasizes the positive impacts of undergraduate research experiences for the U.S. Congress.

Merritt found the experience remarkable, as she presented to governmental officials in the nation’s capital. “Especially when I think about my roots. I come from a small island called Wrangell in Alaska. When I say small I mean 1,800 people and no street lights.”

She enrolled at UNCG in 2011. She took up Chinese as a minor and pursued her criminology concentration, graduating in the fall of 2014.

“As I learned more about criminology, I realized the criminal justice system was not what I had expected – that a lot of injustice existed within the system itself that needs addressing. I began doing research on exonerees because I needed extra coursework to turn into the (UNCG Lloyd International) Honors College to receive disciplinary honors in Sociology. Luckily I had Dr. Westervelt who is a champion in this area and got me really fired up about the aftermath of exonerees.”

She is currently working for a private company helping International students become successful college students. “I hope to start graduate school at UNCG in January 2016, and eventually I hope to be working at the forefront of exonerees reentry services and compensation, whether that be working for a non-profit or from the political angle.”

Visual: Merritt and Westervelt are joined by an exoneree wrongfully convicted of killing a prison guard, as Merritt makes poster presentation

Starfish updates: Summer 2015

With the spring semester coming to a close, the Starfish Outreach Team in the Students First Office would like to wish students, staff, and faculty a productive and restorative summer break. As the university transitions into the summer term, we would like to remind the campus community that the ability to raise Starfish flags and kudos will be turned off during the summer. Flags and kudos will be disabled beginning May 9, 2015 and will become available again for Fall 2015 on August 17, 2015.

The following features will remain available during the summer:

  • Starfish CONNECT online scheduling tools
  • Tutoring Referrals (available for both Summer Sessions I and II)
  • Academic Skills Referrals (available all summer)

Starfish referrals are a new feature that became available during Spring 2015 and are available for staff and faculty to use if they know of a student who can benefit from the referred service. Please visit studentsfirst.uncg.edu/starfish/how-to.php to learn more about each of the referrals that are currently available.

For assistance using Starfish features over the summer, please email Elena Medeiros, the Coordinator of Academic Outreach, at starfish@uncg.edu. Students, staff, and faculty are also encouraged to explore UNCG’s Starfish webpages at studentsfirst.uncg.edu/starfish for additional information about Starfish, its features and available training guides.