Posted on Nov 8, 2018
in Campus News
It may be hard to believe but sometimes the crisp, cool yet sunny season of fall skips the Hill and, simply put, autumn just doesn’t fall onto campus. Many years the blistering Kansas summers turn directly into chilly, breezy winter days and we’re left wondering…”Where was fall?”
Not this year—fall arrived on the Hill with style
A few days of rainfall turned dreary, dull landscapes into brightly beaming yellows, lively greens and olives and fiery reds fit for a crimson (and blue) campus.
It seems as though the leaves turned overnight, and all of a sudden every scene on campus was picture-perfect. We were even given a warm day with blue skies among a cloudy, cool week.
Not only did our photographers spend a few days snapping the warm colors of campus, but we’ve enjoyed sharing the beauty on our Instagram account as well.
“Upon completion in 1950, the Kansas City Star called the Campanile “the finest musical instrument of its kind west of Chicago.”
“A deep impression is left on the alumnus who visits Watson Library. [They] will never forget this place.”
– Graduate Magazine, 1924
“Aren’t we lucky that campus blooms in the spring and then turns around and blooms again in the fall?
What better way to relish in the colors of campus than displaying them on your phone, table or computer?
We’ve added some new fall photos to our mobile wallpapers. Enjoy!
Posted on Nov 1, 2018
in Campus News
The University of Kansas Student Veterans of America and the Veterans Alumni Network will host the Vets Day 5K at 9 a.m. Nov. 11 at the David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. The annual event honors our nation’s veterans and highlights the roles service members and veterans play at KU and in our communities.
This year’s run, which weaves through campus and passes the University’s five war memorials, commemorates the centennial of the Great War armistice, Nov. 11, 1918, which ended fighting between the Allies and Germany. Proceeds from the run support KU Veterans of America, the Veterans Alumni Network and the Lt. Gen. William K. Jones Military-Affiliated Student Center. For more information and to register, visit kuvetsday5k.com.
Veterans and community members are also invited to attend the Lawrence Veterans Day Parade, which begins at 11 a.m. on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. An opening ceremony, which includes an interfaith devotional by the Rev. Verdell Taylor, a military flyover and an Echo Taps sounding, will commence at 10:30 a.m. at 7th and Massachusetts streets. KU’s World War II Memorial Carillon will ring in conjunction with the community bell to mark the centennial celebration.
The parade will feature military vehicles, the Blue Knights, the American Legion and Patriot Guard Riders, as well as veterans representing all branches of service and a Gold Star float to honor service members killed in action. Special guests include veteran Eric Walther; Margaret Mahoney, World War II British Ally of the Royal Air Force Bomber Command; and Richard Schiefelbusch, a World War II veteran and distinguished professor emeritus of KU’s department of speech-language-hearing, who will serve as grand marshal. Dr. Schiefelbusch served in the U.S. Army Air Forces as a B-24 Liberator navigator and was held as a POW from May 14, 1943 to April 29, 1945. The Schiefelbusch Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic and the Schiefelbusch Life Span Institute at KU are named in his honor.
All veterans are encouraged to participate in the parade at no charge. For more information and to download an entry form, visit LawrenceVeteransDay.org or call 785-393-9099.
Posted on Oct 19, 2018
in Alumni News
David Johnston, j’94, g’06, vice president for strategic communications and digital media, recalls his experience taking his oldest daughter to Crimson and Blue Day on Oct. 12.
We’ve been talking a lot lately at work about the term “legacy” and what it means. That makes sense when you consider I work for the KU Alumni Association, which hopes to keep alumni connected to KU in ways that inspire so many Jayhawks to give back to their alma mater. You could even say that we’re in the legacy business. Yet when you boil it down to its essence, what is a legacy, really?
Throughout our strategic planning process–with working groups armed with survey data–we sought to define terms like legacy, pride, tradition and connection: the things we value and stand for at the Association. But legacy might be the most nebulous and difficult to define, even for professional communicators and self-proclaimed “word nerds” like myself. I supposed, conceptually at least, a legacy was simply something you leave behind.
Last week I learned what a legacy truly is, and I discovered that I was half-right.
Crimson & Blue Day
Oct. 12 was a big day at KU. More than 1,200 students and families came to the KU Office of Admissions’ Crimson and Blue Day Open House to tour campus and learn about admission requirements and scholarships while soaking in the spirit, pride and tradition of KU. I took my oldest daughter, Sydney, who has grown up in the shadow of Mount Oread, living in Lawrence her entire life. As a potential third-generation Jayhawk, Sydney (and her siblings, Sophie and Austin) fit the definition of a prospective legacy student at KU.
Even a rainy day couldn’t dampen my pride as I got a rare opportunity to see KU through her fresh eyes; Watching her jaw drop in the expansive atrium of Cap Fed Hall. Getting chills while watching the video of Topher Enneking’s spellbinding spoken word ode, Welcome to KU. Seeing her giddy smile when bumping into the KU volleyball players she has idolized (and realizing they are now closer to being her peers). Sydney’s KU visit was both eye-opening and transformative… for me.
I started working at the University of Kansas in January of 2000, and not too long after, our first child was born. During my 18-year career working at KU, I have hoped that I will one day leave it a better place for the next generation. My contributions to KU, I assumed, would surely serve as my legacy, and really, what better place to make a lasting impact than at a place like KU; an institution that can–based on its bold aspirations–educate leaders, build healthy communities and make discoveries that change the world.
Should Sydney decide to eventually attend KU, she’ll have the world at her fingertips with opportunities to learn, lead and succeed in ways that any proud dad would hope for his little girl. With any luck, she’ll also be left with the values and life lessons her mom and I have tried to teach her along the way.
It became clear during her visit that she was indeed ready for KU and ready to make her mark on the world. Sending her off to college–and perhaps even dropping her off at KU–will be a difficult challenge saved for another day, but I know that I would feel incredibly proud to leave her at KU. And that’s when it hit me.
Leaving my legacy at KU took on new meaning for me last week. My legacy, I discovered, is not some thing I leave behind. It is someone.
The KU Alumni Association’s Legacy Relations team can help alumni families navigate the KU admissions process by scheduling campus visits, advocating for students who seek scholarships and connecting parents and grandparents to campus contacts in financial aid, housing, etc. Email Joy Maxwell, director of legacy relations, at email@example.com for more information.
Posted on Oct 11, 2018
in Campus News
The University of Kansas Student Involvement & Leadership Center, Student Alumni Network and Center for Community Outreach will host KU’s second annual Trunk or Treat from 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 26 in the Adams Alumni Center parking lot, 1266 Oread Ave. on the Lawrence campus. Admission is free.
The family-friendly event features decorated trunks and candy stations for community members and their children to trick-or-trick in a safe and fun environment. Other activities include pumpkin painting, photos with Baby Jay, games and a contest for Best Halloween Costume. The event is sponsored by Hy-Vee grocery stores, with two locations in Lawrence, and is supported by Kansas Athletics.
Families are encouraged to bring a donation for the KU Fights Hunger food drive, which collects nonperishable food items for Just Food of Douglas County. Items of greatest need include canned protein, beans, whole-grain cereals, pasta and nuts.
For more information, contact Erin Kelly, SILC student engagement graduate assistant, at 785-864-9177 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, contact Keon Stowers, KUAA assistant director of student programs, at 785-864-4795 or email@example.com.
Posted on Oct 4, 2018
in Campus News
The following message was sent to University of Kansas faculty and staff members. Read past messages from Chancellor Douglas A. Girod.
This week, we saw good news that accompanied our annual 20th day enrollment announcement.
Our new class of freshmen has the highest average ACT score and the highest average high school GPA of any class in history. Our six-year graduation rate and freshman retention rate are the highest they’ve ever been.
We also grew our university’s overall headcount for the fifth straight year. The Edwards Campus in particular saw a 12.5 percent student credit hour increase in its academic programs.
All of this is a testament to the good work you do each day to attract, recruit and retain talented students.
These efforts are always ongoing, of course. Next week, we will have a special opportunity to welcome prospective students and families to Lawrence for our annual Crimson & Blue Day.
On Friday, Oct. 12, high school students, transfer students and their families will participate in campus tours, academic sessions, resource fairs and open houses to all the residence halls and scholarship halls and some fraternities and sororities to help them explore KU. More information, including a full schedule of events, is available at admissions.ku.edu/crimsonandblue.
All of us contribute to our recruitment efforts, so I want to thank you in advance for helping to showcase the best parts of being a Jayhawk.
So if you see a prospective student on campus next Friday, stop and say hello — or ask and see if they need directions!
Again, thank you for all that you do to attract great students to our university and to help them develop into the leaders of tomorrow.
Douglas A. Girod
University of Kansas
Posted on Oct 1, 2018
in Campus News
Two University of Kansas students, Jose Montoya of Los Lunas, New Mexico, and Jonnette Oakes of Topeka, are winners of the 28th annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership (Ex.C.E.L.) Awards. The award presentation during halftime of the KU-Oklahoma State football game Sept. 29 in the David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium concluded KU’s 106th Homecoming celebration.
Montoya, a senior majoring in sport management and journalism, is president of the Multicultural Greek Council. He is a Hawk Link Honors Program graduate and participates in the Multicultural Scholars Program. He is treasurer of the music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and he served as vice president of the Latino fraternity Phi Iota Alpha. He is a Marching Jayhawks rank leader and press announcer for KU Women’s Tennis. He served as a sports reporter and crew member for Playmakers Central on KUJH-TV and was a volunteer crew member for Rock Chalk Video. He won the Earl Falkenstien Honor Award in 2018 and has interned in Washington, D.C., for the past two summers.
Oakes, a senior majoring in political science with a minor in business, is a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority and served as the chapter’s president and nominating chair. She was secretary of the law fraternity Phi Alpha Delta and currently serves as vice president of outreach for the National Pan-Hellenic Council. She has been a student ambassador at KU and she assists new students as an Adidas peer mentor. She interned for the Kansas Legislature and was a desk assistant for the KU Office of Multicultural Affairs.
The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 scholarship to two students. Nominees were selected on the basis of leadership, effective communication skills, involvement at KU and in the Lawrence community, academic scholarship and ability to work with a variety of students and organizations.
“Home on the Hill”
The theme for this year’s Homecoming was “Home on the Hill.” The event was sponsored by Crown Toyota, Volkswagen and Hy-Vee, with two locations in Lawrence, and was supported by Kansas Athletics. Students and alumni participated in several activities throughout the week, including competitions, reunions and tailgates. The Alumni Association also launched KU Mentoring, a program that provides career connections and networking opportunities for students and alumni. The program is the first phase of the Jayhawk Career Network.
The annual Homecoming celebration was organized by the KU Alumni Association and a student-led steering committee, which was chaired by Allyson Bellner, a sophomore from Marion, Iowa, majoring in biology; Ashley Dunn, a Lawrence junior majoring in communication studies; Logan Hotz, a Rose Hill junior majoring in mathematics and economics; Mary Claire McLaughlin, a junior from Ballwin, Missouri, majoring in mechanical engineering and business; and Rebecca Seldin, a junior from Deerfield, Illinois, majoring in strategic communications. They worked with Alumni Association staff members Ally Stanton, director of student programs, and Keon Stowers, assistant director of student programs.
The Homecoming parade was Thursday, Sept. 27, on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence and featured KU alumni Rich and Judy Howard Billings of Lakewood, Colorado, as grand marshals. The Billings are benefactors of the annual Spirit of 1912 Award and participated in their 60th Homecoming celebration this year.
Other 2018 Homecoming event and award winners are:
Jennifer Alderdice Homecoming Award
Brianna Mears, a junior from Georgetown, Texas majoring in strategic communications
Rich and Judy Billings Spirit of 1912 Award
Howard Cohen, a 1979 School of Business alumnus, and his wife, Debra, from Leawood
1st place: Alpha Delta Pi, Chi Omega, Alpha Tau Omega, Beta Sigma Psi
2nd place: Kappa Delta, Sigma Kappa, Theta Chi, Delta Tau Delta
3rd place: Alpha Chi Omega, Triangle, Delta Gamma, Sigma Pi
Student Life – Chalk & Rock Competition
Best Interpretation of Theme: Sellards Scholarship Hall
Best Use of Space: Watkins Scholarship Hall
Difficulty Level – Picasso: Krehbiel Scholarship Hall
Most Spirited: The Big Event
Best Incorporation of Organization: Women in Medicine
For more information about this year’s event, visit the Homecoming website.
Posted on Sep 26, 2018
in Campus News
In the basement of Strong Hall, the staff and students of TRIO Supportive Educational Services and STEM are hard at work filling the halls with decorations, cookies, music and mugs. Hundreds and hundreds of mugs.
What started 15 years ago as an idea to get TRIO students more involved during Homecoming has grown into a tradition you don’t want to miss.
Rod Oelschlager, then TRIO Academic Coordinator, launched the event in 2003. “The first one was in Room 7 with about 25 mugs that my mom donated,” Oelschlager said. “We put up a few crimson and blue streamers, made hot chocolate in a turkey roaster, and waited to see if anyone was interested. The mugs and hot chocolate were gone in 15 minutes. We knew we were on to something.”
Each year, the Great Mug Giveaway gets bigger and bigger. The number of mugs has multiplied, and a few streamers has given way to hallways turned into art studios. Oelschlager is since retired but remains heavily involved in his creation.
“After a few years in Room 7 and more and more people showing up, we moved into the hallway outside our offices,” Oelschlager said. “Today we will have over 500 mugs to choose from, hundreds of guests, and decorations that we start on in July or early August each year.”
Collecting all the mugs is a year-round process. Rod and the TRIO staff keep an eye out for mugs at thrift stores and garage sales. They also appreciate mug donations.
TRIO is a college opportunity program that provides support for students from disadvantaged backgrounds in their pursuit of a successful college experience.
Even in retirement, Oelschlager gives his time to TRIO and his alma mater. “Like so many alums at KU, we have a real love for our University. Rock Chalk is much more than just a chant to us.”
Posted on Sep 24, 2018
in Campus News
Eight finalists have been selected for the 28th-annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership Awards at the University of Kansas. The finalists, all seniors, will participate in the Homecoming parade at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, along Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. Two winners will be announced during halftime of the KU-Oklahoma State Homecoming football game Sept. 29 at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium.
The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 scholarship to two students. Nominees were selected on the basis of leadership, effective communication skills, involvement at KU and in the Lawrence community, academic scholarship and ability to work with a variety of students and organizations. The selection committee included representatives from Student Union Activities, the Board of Class Officers, the Student Involvement and Leadership Center, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, and the Homecoming Steering Committee.
The award was first given in 1991 to recognize two students for achievement. Names of winners are listed on a plaque on the fifth level of the Kansas Union. To be eligible, applicants must be full-time undergraduate students with an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. Each finalist completed an application and participated in an interview. The finalists and their academic majors are listed below, along with highlights of their campus achievements.
Autumn Crafton, management and leadership with a minor in psychology, is vice president of development for Student Union Activities and has coordinated events for the organization. She is a student assistant for School of Business career services and served as an Amazon Prime student lead brand ambassador. She volunteers at the Lawrence Public Library, where she assists with youth programs and services.
Ashley Dunn, communication studies with a minor in leadership studies, is a student ambassador for KU Admissions and an events coordinator for Student Union Activities. She served as a resident assistant for Student Housing and was a student assistant for the Center for Public Partnerships and Research. She is a Hawk Link graduate and participates in the Multicultural Scholars Program. She is a member of the Black Student Union and the Homecoming Steering Committee. She was a Student Senator for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and participated in the Rotary Youth Leadership Academy.
Harneet Sanghera, finance and political science, is president of the Kansas Memorial Unions Corporation Board and lead building manager for the Kansas Union. She has served Student Union Activities in several leadership roles, including president, vice president and special events coordinator. She participates in the University Honors Program and the Business Honors Program and is treasurer of Mortar Board. She was a Student Senator for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. She has volunteered at Just Food, Kansas Appleseed, Project Create and KU Community Conversation.
From Overland Park
Nidhi Patel, English and biology, is a University Honors Scholar and student ambassador and peer mentor in the program. She also participates in the Honors Program Student Council and served as co-president. She has been a research assistant in medicinal chemistry and early childhood research, and she serves as academic chair of the medical fraternity Phi Delta Epsilon. She participated in the KU Jeeva Dance Group and was an APEX peer tutor. She volunteers at the Lawrence Community Shelter and Lawrence Memorial Hospital. She was named a Global Scholar in 2016 and a Hall Center Scholar in 2018.
Nellie Landon Kassebaum, English with a minor in public policy, is co-executive director of the student advocacy organization Rise KU and president of board of class officers. She is a student advisory board member for the Dole Institute of Politics and a member of the Student Alumni Leadership Board. She participated in Student Senate and was vice president and founding member of Sigma Delta Tau sorority. She is a student ambassador for the University Honors Program and served as Homecoming executive director in 2017. She volunteers at Camp Planet D and the Lawrence Public Library. She was named a Hall Center Scholar in 2017.
Hannah Berland, human biology and pre-medicine, is a KU School of Medicine Rural Scholar and participates in the University Honors Program. She is president of Phi Delta Epsilon and has served as the medical fraternity’s vice president of programming and technology chair. She directs recruitment for the KU Dance Marathon and oversees the rural medical brigades for the Jayhawk Health Initiative. She is a mental health peer educator at KU Counseling and Psychological Services and she interns at the JayDoc Free Clinic. She has volunteered at Lawrence Memorial Hospital and the St. Lawrence Center, where she currently serves as a eucharistic minister.
Jonnette Oakes, political science with a minor in business, is a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority and served as the chapter’s president and nominating chair. She was secretary of the law fraternity Phi Alpha Delta and currently serves as vice president of outreach for the National Pan-Hellenic Council. She has been a student ambassador at KU and she assists new students as an Adidas peer mentor. She interned for the Kansas Legislature and was a desk assistant for the KU Office of Multicultural Affairs.
From Los Lunas
Jose Montoya, sport management and journalism, is president of the Multicultural Greek Council. He is a Hawk Link Honors Program graduate and participates in the Multicultural Scholars Program. He is treasurer of the men’s music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and he served as vice president of the Latino fraternity Phi Iota Alpha. He is a Marching Jayhawks rank leader and press announcer for KU Women’s Tennis. He served as a sports reporter and crew member for Playmakers Central on KUJH-TV and was a volunteer crew member for Rock Chalk Video. He won the Earl Falkenstien Honor Award in 2018 and has interned in Washington, D.C., for the past two summers.
Posted on Sep 7, 2018
in Campus News
The University of Kansas will celebrate its 106th Homecoming Sept. 22-29 with the theme “Home on the Hill,” culminating in the KU football game against Oklahoma State University on Sept. 29 in David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium.
The annual event is organized by the KU Alumni Association and features a weeklong series of student and alumni activities, including competitions, reunions, tailgates, the Homecoming Parade on Sept. 27 and the selection of 10 student finalists for the Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership (Ex.C.E.L.) Awards. The winners will be announced during halftime of the football game. The event is sponsored by Crown Toyota, Volkswagen and Hy-Vee, with two locations in Lawrence, and is supported by Kansas Athletics.
The grand marshals for this year’s parade are Rich and Judy Howard Billings of Lakewood, Colorado. The Billings, both 1957 KU graduates, are Life Members of the Alumni Association and Presidents Club donors. They also are benefactors of the annual Spirit of 1912 Award, which commemorates the first year of KU’s Homecoming and recognizes Jayhawks who consistently display school spirit, pride and tradition. This is the 60th year the Billings will participate in the university’s Homecoming celebration.
The student-led Homecoming Steering Committee is chaired by Allyson Bellner, a sophomore from Marion, Iowa, majoring in biology and Ashley Dunn, a Lawrence junior majoring in communication studies. They work with Alumni Association staff members Ally Stanton, director of student programs, and Keon Stowers, assistant director of student programs.
For a complete schedule of Homecoming events, visit kualumni.org/homecoming.
Posted on Aug 13, 2018
in Campus News
The University of Kansas community is invited to celebrate the life of Chancellor Del Shankel on Saturday, August 18 in Woodruff Auditorium at 4 p.m.
The service will feature remarks by Chancellor Douglas A. Girod, KU Alumni Association President Heath Peterson and former Kansas Athletics Director Sheahon Zenger, as well as faculty colleagues and family members who knew Chancellor Shankel best.
Chancellor Shankel passed away in July at the age of 90. He leaves behind his wife, Carol, their two children and two grandchildren, and countless Jayhawks whose lives he touched.
You can learn more about Chancellor Shankel’s remarkable life by reading Chancellor Girod’s message to the university sent July 12. The Alumni Association also sent an email to members with remarks from Heath Peterson.