Jayhawks in the news

Posted on Apr 29, 2016 in Alumni News and News

Eulich Jayhawk Adams Alumni Center | www.kualumni.org
Welcome to our first installment—and, we hope, not the last!—of Jayhawks in the news!

Every week, we see so many great stories floating around the interwebs that feature Jayhawks and the great things they are doing. We post them on Facebook, share them on Twitter, shout them from the rooftops—but we know that not everyone uses all forms of social media, and that even if you do, you’re likely to miss more posts than you see.

So, we plan to start a regular feature right here on our website where you can find links to these stories and learn what your fellow alumni are up to these days.

Blue Man Group features KU graduate | Salina Journal

Ethan Golub, f’08, is a native of Providence, Rhode Island, who graduated with degree in music theory and then headed west to Los Angeles to study acting and comedy improvisation. He later auditioned for the Blue Man Group and has spent the past four years performing with the group. Read the full article.

Watch for future coverage in Kansas Alumni magazine about Golub.

This Founder’s story is so compelling, it got her $1.5M in VC funds | Forbes

Dr. Mylea Charvat’s tale of going from a PhD on an academic track to entrepreneur is as compelling as her product; so compelling, it’s what got her $1.5M in funding late last year. Learn how a car accident, a rude awakening about the state of medical care and a background in cognitive function research led Charvat, c’02, to launch a new company. Read the full article.

KU alumnus snags deal in ABC’s ‘Shark Tank’ | University Daily Kansan

We featured a Q&A with Steven Blustein, b’09, g’11, earlier this month before he appeared on Shark Tank with his PrideBites co-founder, Sean Knecht. How’d they do? The duo scored big on the hit television show, making a deal with two investors that has helped kicked off their company. Read the full article.

Lawrence math teacher to appear on new reality competition show ‘Strong’ | Lawrence Journal-World

And in other reality show news, alumna Brittany Harrell-Miller, c’14, was selected for a new strength and conditioning competition series that pairs contestants with professional trainers to complete challenges.  Read the full article.

From Johnny’s Icehouse to Latvia, Chicagoan teaching kids hockey, English | DNA Info

We profiled Meredith Chait, c’14, j’14, on our blog last year, after she spent nine weeks volunteering in Tanzania. Now, the globetrotting graduate is in Latvia on a Fulbright Scholarship, where she’s been teaching English and hockey to children for the past eight months. Read the full article.

Have you seen a story featuring a Jayhawk? Send it our way so we can include it in a future post! Email us at share@kualumni.org.

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KU alumna opts for adventure over 9-to-5

Posted on Mar 18, 2015 in Alumni News and News

Meredith Chait | www.kualumni.org

Meredith Chait knew she had to travel. Bit by the bug at a young age, she had vacationed in Africa with her family when she was 10 years old, lived in Belgium for three years, thanks to her father’s work, and studied abroad in Scotland during her time at KU. So it was only natural that she’d choose adventure over an average 9-to-5 job after graduation.

Meredith, c’14, j’14, showed signs of straying from the norm early in her college career, when she elected to take Swahili to fulfill her foreign language requirement. She loved it—even ended up minoring in it—and explored options to put her newfound skill to work.

She decided to focus her attention on Tanzania, one of the safer countries in Africa where Swahili is spoken. Internet searches turned up a number of volunteer opportunities, although many of them required participants to pay for the experience, an option Meredith couldn’t afford. But when a family friend told her about a no-expense prospect to work with deaf children in Tanzania, she couldn’t say no.

Meredith took off for Dar es Salaam, the most populous city in the country, where she stayed in a convent near one of the three elementary schools for deaf children. Each morning she woke to a breakfast of white bread and tea or coffee, sometimes a plantain, too. After a short walk to the school, she spent a few hours building the school’s website or teaching the kindergarten students to count. In the afternoons, she took Swahili sign language from one of the teachers.

“The students taught me a lot, too,” Meredith admits. “They would write Swahili words in the dirt and then sign them. One of my favorite things was just hanging out and signing with the children.”

Meredith rounded out her days with excursions around the city or to the nearby island of Zanzibar. She spent time drinking coffee at local cafes or playing cards with other volunteers. She even went on a three-day safari by herself.

Meredith’s nine-week adventure definitely left her yearning for more and confident that she’s capable of just about anything. She’s currently exploring opportunities to return to Africa to work for a nonprofit group or other charitable organization.

“I didn’t get the urge to travel out of my system,” she says. “I now want more adventures and more opportunities to travel—and to never have a desk job.”

—Heather Biele

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