Oglethorpe’s 2013 Commencement Ceremony will be held this Saturday, May 18 at 9:00 a.m. on the academic quadrangle. President Larry Schall and Board of Trustees Chair Norman P. Findley will preside over the commencement ceremony for approximately 225 graduates. During the ceremony, Oglethorpe also will present honorary degrees (Doctor of Humane Letters) to two accomplished alumni: John Frederick (“Fred”) Agel, Sr. ’52 and Donald J. Rubin ’56.
“Oglethorpe is pleased to honor two alumni who have remained committed to this university for the past five decades,” said President Schall. “Both have generously given back in their communities and invested in the ongoing success of today’s students, embodying the Oglethorpe ideal to ‘make a life, make a living and make a difference.’”
Both honorary degree recipients will address the Class of 2013. Other speakers will include Senior Class President Carl Anthony Golden II ’13, Oglethorpe University National Alumni Association President John Cleveland Hill ’01 and Debra A. Bryant ’13, the 2011-2012 David Wills Presidential Fellow. Additional commencement details are available online.
Honorary degree recipient Fred Agel '52
Fred Agel, a World War II veteran and an Oglethorpe alumnus of the class of 1952, is a retired sales agent for Bowman Distribution and a champion of leadership in public health. Mr. Agel has remained an active volunteer with the university for many years, including serving on the Oglethorpe University Board of Trustees since 2008. Mr. Agel formerly served as President of the Oglethorpe National Alumni Association Board and has volunteered in the University Archives, the Office of Admission and the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art. He is a 1985 inductee into the Oglethorpe Athletic Hall of Fame and is the 1987 recipient of the Talmage Award, which recognizes alumni who contribute time, talent or financial resources to one or more programs of the university and/or is distinguished in the business or professional world. Mr. Agel has been a generous donor to the university over the years, and established The J. Frederick Agel, Sr. ’52 Endowed Scholarship, awarded annually to two rising seniors who contribute significantly to student life and who have a grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Mr. Agel has been an active leader in his community, supporting and volunteering with numerous organizations, including the DeKalb County Board of Health, DeKalb County United Way Council, DeKalb County Council on Literacy, DeKalb County Community Service Board, Episcopal Charities Foundation, Jerusalem House, Brookwood Atlanta Rotary Club, and with his church, St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal. He is a founder of Senior Connections and founding member and organizer of the National Association of Local Boards of Health and the Georgia Association of Community Service Boards, Inc. In recognition of his ongoing and heartfelt commitment to his community, Mr. Agel has earned numerous honors, including the national Kentucky Fried Chicken Senior Citizen Award for Outstanding Community Service. Most recently, he was named the 2013 Distinguished Older Georgian by The Georgia Council on Aging. He and his wife, Cathy, reside in Atlanta.
Honorary degree recipient Donald Rubin '56 pictured with his wife, Shelley.
Donald Rubin, an Oglethorpe alumnus of the class of 1956, is the founder of MultiPlan, Inc., a major general service PPO health provider. Now retired, Mr. Rubin is a generous philanthropist and avid arts advocate. He and his wife, Shelley, founded The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, a family foundation based in New York City that began operation in 1995 and focuses on giving to arts and culture, health and human services, and civil liberty and social justice primarily in the Himalayan region and the New York City metropolitan area. The Rubins also established the Rubin Museum of Art (New York), where Mr. Rubin currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees. The Rubins started collecting Himalayan art in the early 1980s and amassed a significant collection that became the core of the museum’s holdings. Mr. Rubin also developed the Himalayan Art Resources website to catalog Himalayan and Tibetan art online from collections around the world. He initiated the Labor Arts Project to gather, identify and display examples of the cultural and artistic history of American working people and to celebrate the trade union movement’s contributions to that history. A member of the Global Philanthropists Circle, Mr. Rubin has demonstrated a commitment to philanthropy throughout his life. Mr. and Mrs. Rubin have given generously to support the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, including a recent record donation to the endowment and numerous direct gifts to its permanent collection throughout the years. The Rubins have loaned artwork from their extensive personal collection for OUMA exhibitions, including: Goddess, Lion Peasant, Priest: Modern Indian Art from the Collection of Shelley & Donald Rubin (2011); What is Cuban Art? Contemporary Cuban Art from the Collection of Shelley & Donald Rubin (2009); Tibetan Contemporary Art: From the Collection of Shelley & Donald Rubin (2009); A Shower of Jewels: Wealth Deities from the Rubin Museum of Art (2008); and, Lord of Compassion: Images of Avalokiteshvara from the Rubin Museum of Art (2008). The South Gallery of the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art will be renamed as The Shelley & Donald Rubin Gallery in May 2013 in their honor.
The Symposium in the Liberal Arts and Sciences is an annual event that brings together students and faculty in a day-long celebration of exemplary analytic and creative work produced by Oglethorpe students during the academic year.
Dr. Lewis opens the day’s events with a keynote address. Dr. Lewis is a professor of history at Kennesaw State University, Director of the Museum of History and Holocaust Education, and Executive Director of Museums, Archives & Rare Books.
In order to make the address more interactive, Dr. Lewis asked students several questions ranging from “What you would like to do if money were no object?” and “If you had thirty days, what would you like to learn?”
Senior Caitlyn Mitchell gives her presentation about “Science and the Church.” Students presented their research in a wide subject area, from “The Process of Modern Cosmology” to “Horror-Comedy: The Chaotic Spectrum and Cinematic Synthesis”.
Students view a painting series by art major Katherine Law. Created in this year’s Advanced Painting class, the assignment was to create a juxtaposition series involving commonplace and horrifying imagery and integrate them together into three different paintings.
The naming is in recognition of a generous gift from the Özgörkey family, many of whom were in attendance. Cemal Özgörkey, chairman of Özgörkey Holding, is a member of the Oglethorpe’s Board of Trustees. Both he and his brother, Armagan Özgörkey, vice chairman of Özgörkey Holding, are Oglethorpe alumni. The bell tower’s new name honors their mother, Lale Özgörkey. The family’s gift benefits Oglethorpe’s new campus center, opening in August 2013.
“Oglethorpe’s relationship with the Özgörkey family began more than 30 years ago and we could not be more proud of Cemal and Armagan and what they accomplished,” said Oglethorpe President Larry Schall. “It’s a tremendous privilege for our entire community to name the bell tower that overlooks our campus in honor of their mother, Lale Özgörkey.”
Lupton Hall is named after John Thomas Lupton, the owner of the Southern franchise of the Coca-Cola Bottling Company. Lupton Hall was completed in three phases, with groundbreaking ceremonies in 1922, 1924 and 1927. The bell tower, a part of the original section of the hall, was built as a memorial to Lupton’s mother. Lupton Hall was the second building erected on the university’s campus.
Oglethorpe Day is an annual celebration of Oglethorpe University’s namesake and is a chance for the entire community to show its school spirit. Check out the photos, videos and comments below to relive it — or to feel like you were right here on campus!
See scenes from throughout the day in this photo album:
Our very own President Schall delivered this year’s Oglethorpe Day speech, titled, “Non nobis solum (not for ourselves alone): What is the Role of a University President in Liberal Society?” Watch it here:
President Larry Schall’s 2013 Oglethorpe Day Speech
Oglethorpe’s First Lady Betty Londergan was featured this morning on CBS Atlanta 46 for her volunteer efforts on behalf of the nonprofit Heifer International, which “work(s) with communities to end hunger and poverty and care for the earth.”
She is traveling to 12 countries in 12 months to share the stories of Heifer’s good works around the world—all chronicled in her blog project called Heifer12x12.com. Currently seven months into her literal and virtual journey, she’s traveled to Guatemala, Haiti, Rwanda and Romania, to name a few.
Londergan’s work also extends directly to the Oglethorpe campus. Oglethorpe will host Heifer International’s Heifer Sustainability Summit on October 12-13, 2012. And, through Londergan’s efforts in collaboration with Oglethorpe’s Center for Civic Engagement, the campus will launch the OU Heifer Club in fall 2012—the first Heifer club on a college or university campus in the south.
Following a national championship and top national D-III coach honors for Coach Jim Owens, the honors for the 2011-2012 Oglethorpe men’s golf team continue.
Petrels Golfers Earn Academic Honors
The Oglethorpe men’s golf team earned recognition as a Division III All-Academic Team for the 2012 season, the Golf Coaches Association of America announced recently.
To be eligible for recognition as an All-Academic Team, a squad must have a team grade-point average of 3.0 or better for the academic year. Oglethorpe is one of 27 teams to earn the honor this season.
The Petrels brought home their second national championship, in addition to their 10th SCAC title, in May. They return all but three players from last year’s squad next season.
Rebitch Earns All-Academic Scholar Honors
Oglethorpe senior golfer Matt Rebitch recently was named a Division III Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-America Scholar by the Golf Coaches Association of America. Rebitch is one of 48 Division III golfers to earn the award this year.
A student-athlete who is eligible for a Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-America Scholar award is either a junior or senior academically and competes in at least two full years at the collegiate level, participates in at least 70 percent of his team’s competitive rounds or competes in the NCAA Championships, has a stroke average under 79 in Division III, and maintains a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.2. A recipient must also be of high moral character and be in good standing at his college or university.
Rebitch helped the Stormy Petrels to their second NCAA championship in May, finishing in a tie for 40th in individual competition at the national tournament.
Maccaglia Named to All-Nicklaus Team
The Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) named Oglethorpe freshman Anthony Maccaglia to its All-Nicklaus Team late last month. Maccaglia is one of 24 golfers named to the team, which awards the top men’s collegiate golfers in all divisions of college athletics (all three NCAA divisions, NAIA and NJCAA). He is the first Stormy Petrel ever named to the squad.
The accolade is another in a flurry that Maccaglia received after leading Oglethorpe to its second national championship in May. He was the NCAA individual champion, for which he won the Arnold Palmer Award. He also brought home the GCAA’s Phil Mickelson Award as the nation’s most outstanding freshman, and was named to the organization’s PING All-America First Team. His overall tournament score of five-under-par was the only individual below-par score posted over the course of the week.
Maccaglia also helped the Stormy Petrels to their 10th SCAC title in April, and earned SCAC Freshman of the Year and First-Team All-SCAC honors.
The Oglethorpe campus “came alive” on Friday with Halloween celebrations throughout the day. The annual tug-of-war contest was waged on the quad in commemoration of the Battle of Bloody Marsh, once again pitting students against the faculty and staff in a battle of will. This year the students triumphed and won the privilege—and thrill—of pie-ing participating faculty and staff in the face! Check out the battle and the “carnage”!
Later in the day nearly ten campus departments waged their own battle (of creativity) in an office decorating contest in preparation for campus-wide trick-or-treating. The decorations ranged from haunted houses to a pirate theme. But at the end of the online voting, the Center for Civic Engagement won bragging rights and a free lunch with their “graveyard” theme depicting the demise of the Ogle-turkey (he was delicious) and the fate of those who forget their Petrel Passes (!) Check out the scary and silly decorations and you be the judge.
The day came to an end with a spirited costume contest, judged by theatre professor Matt Huff and financial aid director Meg McGinness, and featuring nearly 40 competitors. Ashley Causey ’14 transformed herself into Mother Nature and snagged the student grand prize—an iPad! Business office staff member Melissa Briley took the faculty/staff grand prize home—and to heart—with her creative iPad costume, complete with her own version of interactive features. Check out more costumes and find your favorite!
Just in time for Halloween and Oglethorpe’s Zombie Week…! Oglethorpe University will welcome Zombie expert and authorMax Brooks to campus on Monday, October 24. Join us—if you dare—at 7:00 p.m. in Lupton Auditorium to hear Brooks’ “10 Lessons for Surviving a Zombie Attack,” based on his book The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead.
Brooks is also the author of The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks and World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, soon to be made into a major motion picture starring Brad Pitt.
Brooks is a former writer for Saturday Night Live and is the son of Hollywood’s Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft.
A book signing will follow, with books available for purchase. The event is free and open to the public, with limited seating. No zombies allowed.
On September 13, Oglethorpe was thrilled to welcome The Clark Howard Show, which broadcasted their primetime show live from Oglethorpe’s Weltner Library.
The show stars Clark Howard, a favorite consumer advocate, TV personality and author, who incidentally was an Oglethorpe student at one point during his academic career.
The studio audience included President Schall and more than 50 OU students who had the chance to hear tips about saving for college, paying off college debt, and other life-long financial words of wisdom.
Several students even had the chance to ask their own questions—some live on-air, like OU freshman Kai Owens, who asked about ways to pay off college debt before graduating. View the entire live show online.