Latest Arts & Culture
Oglethorpe junior Joseph White was recently awarded a GAIN Scholarship by the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) to study abroad. He’ll use the award to spend his spring semester in Seoul studying South Korea’s culture, language and politics. Joe will be the first Oglethorpe student to study abroad in the politically tumultuous country.
GAIN scholars are selected for their dedication to internationalizing their education. While in South Korea, Joe will fulfill the study abroad requirement for his international studies major, and will study North Korean politics as part of his politics minor. He plans to work in politics with an emphasis on Korean affairs, an interest that began several years ago.
Joe first got the opportunity to travel the summer after he graduated from Stars Mill High School. Most of his friends visited Europe for their pre-college travels, but he wanted to try something a little more adventurous.
“I went to Korea for about two weeks to visit a friend that was teaching English there. I toured around the area, didn’t do a whole lot of stuff I wanted to do, but did some of the major tourist highlights. But now I really want to get involved with their culture, their language, and even potentially some of their history.”
When he got the opportunity to study abroad at Oglethorpe, it was this location that called to him. As assistant to OU Study Abroad Director Dr. Jeffrey Collins, Joe spent this semester helping other students abroad.
“I make sure that their classes are going well, that they’re integrating into society, stuff like that. If there’s something wrong personally with them it’s easier to talk to a student than it is to talk to a teacher. I’m that buffer between student and teacher.” Now, though, he’s ready to be in their shoes.
“The school [in Korea] is ranked one of the ivy league in the Asian Pacific. And it’s the only one that offers North Korean politics. That’s the reason I want to go there– to study Korea’s relationship with its fellow Koreans up north and how North Korea affects everything in that area. Especially because, South Korea being one of our main allies, if anything happens to (them) we’re obligated to engage and support them.”
He’s been preparing for the trip by studying the language on his own and working with his martial arts master, a fluent Korean speaker. His study of martial arts influenced his study abroad decisions tremendously. “I’ve been doing [Taekwondo], which is the Korean national martial art, for over 11 years now. When I went to Korea the first time, I got to visit the place where it all started. I want to spend more time understanding the theory and philosophy of Taekwondo.” It’s this familiar, but exotic, culture that Joseph is excited to immerse himself in.
Joseph’s course load will be heavy on Korean language, which he hopes to speak by the time he graduates. His language classes will have a cultural immersion element that will give him the chance to speak, write and read Korean as well as visit with native speakers. “I want to work with the State Department with Korean affairs, because I love the country and I love the people and I respect them very much. So wherever I go, either DC or a national hub like Atlanta, I want to be able to work closely with Korean culture and maybe even business…and possibly be an ambassador to South Korea for the United States.”
“Joe White winning this scholarship to study in Seoul is a great honor for both to our university and to Joe,” said Dr. Collins. “The program is highly competitive, and it is the first time for an OU student to win a CIEE scholarship to study in Seoul. It only indicates how global OU has become, and how we are now known and respected across the world for our academics and student engagement. I am terrifically proud of him.”
Joseph will leave for South Korea in the spring, and wants to encourage all interested OU students to consider having a study abroad experience of their own!
“Challenges of Going from the War Zone to the Classroom”, a recent story on NPR News, addressed the challenges faced by former service members as they transition from military life to college life. Oglethorpe University is proud to be named to the 2013 list of Top Military Friendly Schools and to be a Yellow Ribbon institution. Oglethorpe has designed programs and services to help make veterans’ transition seamless and to help build a foundation for a successful education and career.
Oglethorpe’s Adult Degree Program is the perfect fit for returning service members. The flexibility of the Adult Degree Program allows veterans to pursue their education at their own pace. Classes are available during the day, evenings, and on weekends, with no minimum course-load required. Students may easily transfer college credit earned at other institutions.
Attending college as an adult and veteran can include a mixture of emotions and Oglethorpe’s family atmosphere allows students to form personal connections with their professors and their fellow students. Small class sizes provide the opportunity for adult students to benefit from thought-provoking discussion and have their voice heard. Adult students bring unique life experiences and skills to class, and they will find an atmosphere conducive to sharing and learning.Veterans can expect to share their class time with other adults who take their education seriously.
Oglethorpe’s Academic Success Center provides support services for all students, and its staff members are there to answer questions and help with any academic needs Services include academic advising, disability accommodations and writing assistance. An on-campus counseling center provides a variety of individual, group, emergency, and outreach services designed to meet the specific needs of every student.
Oglethorpe’s commitment to veterans extends beyond the classroom, and our student-veterans and their supporters are active on campus. Here are just a few examples:
- During the week of Veterans’ Day, Oglethorpe is hosting a series of events called “Our Country, Our Voices: Oglethorpe Honors Our Veterans.” These events, including lectures, panel discussions and a movie screening, give veterans and the community the chance to learn more and share their personal experiences about serving.
- The student-run OU Veterans’ Club is an active group that provides support and advocacy for former service members and sponsors numerous events to honor veterans. Recently the club constructed and installed huge yellow ribbons to display at Oglethorpe’s front gate during the period around Veteran’s Day.
- The fall 2012 exhibition at the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art is “Burden of Proof: National Identity and the Legacy of War” which explores the juxtaposition of the American and Vietnamese experience of the Vietnam War and its aftermath. Jef Palframan ’13, the founder and president of the OU Veterans’ Club and a veteran himself, discussed “Violence, War and Culture: One Soldier’s View” as part of the lecture series in conjunction with the exhibition.
- “War, Peace and Security” a special topics course, was recently taught by politics professor Dr. John Orme.
- Oglethorpe welcomed the family of fallen soldier U.S. Army Sargeant Lakeshia Bailey for the unveiling of her “hero portrait”, one of over 2500 oil paintings by Utah native Kaziah Hancock. In 2003, Hancock founded Project Compassion, a nonprofit devoted to helping families heal by offering them hand painted oil-on-canvas likenesses of their loved ones.
- Oglethorpe is proud of alumna Carlissa Carson ’05 who earned a spot on Diplomatic Courier’s “Top 99 Under 33 Foreign Policy Leaders” list for her “creativity, determination, and passion in tackling the world’s critical global challenges.”
If you or a loved one has served our country, or are still serving, and would like to further your education, Oglethorpe has joined forces as a Yellow Ribbon institution. Get the support you need to succeed at one of the 2013 Top Military Friendly Schools. For information on admission, visit our website for adult students or call 404-364-8383.
Hundreds of students, parents and community members came out to celebrate Oglethorpe’s First Annual Fall Festival on a beautiful autumn weekend, making the event a rousing success!
The Fall Festival festivities included Night of the Arts, a historical tour of campus by alumnus Paul Hudson ’72, “A Taste of Oglethorpe” featuring local restaurants, artisans, and children’s activities, and then hot air balloon rides in the evening, sponsored by the Oglethorpe Student Government Association.
“The idea was to transform Parents’ Weekend into a festival atmosphere so that parents and their families could spend some quality time together,” said Robin Brandt, Oglethorpe’s Director of Experiential Learning.
The new tradition will continue next fall!
As an editor of The Tower literary magazine, I would normally hesitate in writing about Night of the Arts. As much as I love the event, there is the possibility that my praises are biased. But this year, my “bias” seems to be shared by the OU community at large.
NOA, as we’ve started calling it, is an annual event held by The Tower to showcase the artistic talents of the OU community. In the past, we’ve held the event in Emerson; this year, with the new campus center construction underway, we moved to Lupton Auditorium, and students welcomed the change.
“It was bigger than ever,” said audience member Bethany Booth ’13. “The change of venue made it much better and clearer and the performances were lovely.”
“Night of the Arts is one of my favorite Oglethorpe traditions,” added Tes Beals ’13. “It was the first event I was able to take my family to as a freshman…(and) it really showcases our student body’s unique talents and the creativity that we all possess.”
As always, getting everything ready for NOA was an ordeal, but my fellow ‘tri-editors,’ Caitlyn Mitchell ’13 and Lindsey Mitchell ’13, agree that the results made the hard work worthwhile.
“This year was really encouraging—the biggest turnout we’ve ever had—which is a really positive indication of The Tower‘s growth,” said Caitlyn. ” After resurrecting The Tower two years ago, it’s been an uphill battle to get (it) back on its feet, and it’s good to know hard work is paying off and that people are getting more involved with and aware of the arts.”
Also celebrating this increased awareness is Dr. Hornback, who spoke about how essential the arts are, and how we are in danger of losing many potential great artists because of funding cuts for art programs across the country. It was a sobering moment among the festivities, but a crucial one, highlighting the importance of those performers on stage.
People of various backgrounds and interests joined together to create a stellar array of acts. Some of their performances included spoken word, piano performance, and vocals. Audience members really seemed to enjoy what they were watching—some even chose to participate!
“My favorite thing about this Night of the Arts was the involvement that we were able to enlist from the audience,” said Lindsey. “This year we really hit on a theme that many people could enjoy. We had our first impromptu dance routine and people from the audience actually joined in!” That dance, The Time Warp, was a perfect fit with our theme of Cult Cinema.
Out of everything that night, there is only one thing I would change—there were so many people attending that we ran out of cake pops (a complimentary snack for attendees) before I had the chance to eat one!
Night of the Arts is becoming a true work of art in its own right, and it’s thanks to the OU community, that the arts are allowed to flourish. Thank you to SGA for funding this event, to our advisor Dr. Taylor for supporting us, to The Tower staff for all your hard work and dedication, and to everyone who performed, assisted, and watched. It’s all thanks to you that Night of the Arts was such a success.
If you are interested in being published by The Tower (the literary magazine responsible for Night of the Arts), send submissions with your name, email, and phone number to Secretary Caitlyn Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or to email@example.com. The cut-off for submissions is tomorrow, October 26th!
Oglethorpe University will host its first annual Fall Festival this Friday and Saturday, October 19-20.
On Friday the festival begins with events for Oglethorpe parents, including a chance to sit in on classes from 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. Later in the day, parents are invited to meet Eric Tack, director of the Academic Success Center, and to attend a seminar led by Dr. Jeffrey Collins about Oglethorpe’s study abroad opportunities. Friday’s activities end with Night of the Arts, an annual event put on by The Tower literary magazine to showcase the artistic talents of Oglethorpe’s students, faculty and staff. Expect a diverse range of acts, including spoken word, singing and piano.
Saturday’s invitation extends to the entire community! Experience “A Taste of Oglethorpe,” featuring local food vendors and artists from 12 noon-3 p.m. Enjoy face painting, games, a moon bounce, music from OU Radio Live and much more.
At 1:00 p.m., Oglethorpe alumnus Paul Hudson ’72 will lead a walking tour of Oglethorpe, providing interesting facts about our nearly 100-year-old campus. The OU Museum of Art, currently featuring the exhibit “Burden of Proof: National Identity and the Legacy of War,” will be open for visitors from 12:00 noon-5:00 p.m.
Read about all the exciting Fall Festival events and make your plans to celebrate the season here on campus!
The idea behind Heifer International is simple: rather than raising money and donating it to the needy, Heifer uses raised funds to buy and donate livestock (cows, chickens, sheep, etc.) to groups of people in need to help to increase their self-sustainability. Not only can they rely on the animals for renewable resources like wool, eggs or milk, but when the Heifer-gifted animal reproduces, the resulting livestock provides even more possibility for income. The self-sufficiency people gain from having their own source of income also helps to improve quality of life. Suddenly, a family can go from surviving to thriving; a village can go from impoverished to self-reliant. The independence that comes with a Heifer gift is often even more valuable than the gift itself. Heifer operates in more than 50 countries and has been a driving force against poverty worldwide since 1944.
The summit will focus on the needs of a world stricken by hunger, poverty, and environmental degradation, and Heifer’s current and future plans to help. Special guest speakers will include National Center for Civil and Human Rights CEO Doug Shipman, Heifer International President and CEO Pierre Ferrari, and Oglethorpe University’s own First Lady, Betty Londergan, the wife of Oglethorpe’s President Schall.
Heifer International has gained quite a following at Oglethorpe, due in part to Londergan’s involvement with the nonprofit. She is on a mission to showcase the benefits of Heifer’s work through Heifer 12×12, a blog project launched by Heifer International, which is taking Londergan to 12 countries in 12 months. Since January, she’s traveled to 11 Heifer-assisted countries, including Uganda, Haiti and Rwanda, and has shared her experiences through blogs and photography.
Thirty of Londergan’s photos will be on exhibit in Oglethorpe’s Lowry Hall in honor of National Photography month. The exhibit, titled “Unforgettable Faces,” will debut during the Summit’s opening dinner reception on Friday, October 12, at 7:00 p.m. in the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art and remain open through December 9, 2012. The photographs will be available for purchase to benefit Heifer International.
But, Londergan isn’t the only Stormy Petrel hoping to make a difference through Heifer. Sophomore Ruwa Romman and a small group of OU students were inspired by Londergan’s involvement with Heifer and decided to get active. They are starting the OU Heifer Club, the first on a college or university campus in the Southeast.
“Oglethorpe’s a good place to have a grassroots initiative [like Heifer],” said Romman. “They focus on self-sustainability, on passing on the gift… We hope to get a movement going. We can’t donate huge sums of money, but if we can donate $10 for chickens and help send someone’s kid to school, that’s still huge. It’s all about giving back.”
The OU Heifer Club will officially launch during the Heifer Sustainability Summit.
As a senior at Oglethorpe, my current goals involve deciding where I want to go with my life, which paths I wish to embark upon and which journeys I will undertake. Ironically, on a physical plane, my navigational abilities are not exactly “present.” Maps and signs befuddle me, as do landmarks, and I can find myself getting lost in ways that are so bizarre as to be impressive… from a certain angle, that is. While my “impressive” skills at getting lost were no different at Georgia State’s Modern Media Conference (it took me half an hour to find the cafeteria), in a deeper sense, there was some direction to be found—the type of direction that every college senior ultimately desires.
I chose to attend Georgia State’s conference because of my editor position with The Tower literary magazine, as well as my internship with Oglethorpe’s Pegasus Creative (the University Communication department’s newly-launched student communications agency that gives us the opportunity to gain real world experience in a collaborative team environment). The conference, held September 28-29, was packed with more than 20 guest speakers from major media outlets such as CNN, ESPN, WSB-TV, HLN, and WXIA. I was accompanied by Director of Communications Renee Vary, Assistant Director Debbie Aiken ’12, and Pegasus Creative’s Web Content Development Intern Debra Bryant ’12 (who also came on behalf of The Nightcap, the Evening Degree Program’s newsletter.)
The four of us had numerous lectures to choose from, some headed by photojournalists, others by newspaper editors, and a few by the professors at Georgia State themselves. The variety of seminars offered went far beyond what I had anticipated, and I used up an entire booklet taking notes on what was discussed.
Throughout the course of the day, I was able to attend five sessions, ranging from a passionate lecture called “Get to the Damn Point!” (something which I have admittedly not done yet—read on!) to an informative presentation on what makes student government an exciting body to report on. (As a member of our school’s SGA, this was especially topical for me!). Journalist and Editor Michael Koretzky ended the conference with several stories concerning his own experiences in the professional world; he encouraged the audience to “be fired for the right reason,” before recounting several situations in which he was fired for just that.
So, what is the “darn” point of me writing this? Well, there are several points I wish to share with you—I had fun, I learned a lot, and I hope to have more opportunities like this in the future. Is this where I want to go with my life? Do I want to work in PR, journalism, broadcasting, or some other form of media? I don’t know, but I now see them as options, which puts me a step closer to finding my way than I was before.
Students can learn the Japanese art of origami while giving back by folding cranes to sell as symbols of hope and support for those suffering from cancer. Although origami is an ancient art, the idea that 1000 cranes bring luck is still popular around the world. From the paper crane-draped Ueno Toshogu Shrine in Japan, a monument to advocate peace between nations, to the true story of Sadako, a girl who folded cranes to be granted her wish for life after battling leukemia, the symbol of a paper crane is a harbinger of peace and luck in hard times.
Kevin hopes to generate enough interest and awareness to form an origami club on campus, and eventually to raise money to aid cancer patients. His goal is not just to fundraise, but to be a call to action. Oglethorpe students trying to “make a life, make a living, make a difference” can support the Cranes for Cancer initiative by attending meetings every Wednesday at 6 p.m. in the Phase II lobby. All interested students are encouraged to come—from the newest beginners to the paper-folding masters—everyone is welcome!
Those who can’t make the meetings can help out by donating something a little out of ordinary—paper. Come fold cranes—for good luck and for a good cause!
Oglethorpe University’s chapter of Chi Phi fraternity raised more than $600 to benefit the DeKalb Rape Crisis Center at their annual charity event, Greekapalooza, on Friday, September 14.
Donations increased almost 100% over last year’s event, in part because Chi Phi offered a free benefit show played by local musicians, the Critty Upchurch Band, who played covers of popular songs at the Greek Row block party.
Edmund Smith, a sophomore brother of Chi Phi, says that donating to support the cause is important, but the bigger goal was to raise awareness for the DRCC. “Though we hope OU students never need it, we want people to know that there is a place they can go for help.”
Not only did Greekapalooza raise money to help the victims of rape and sexual violence, it was also the first event of OU’s Fall 2012 Greek Recruitment/Rush. All of the Greek organizations at Oglethorpe attended to show support and to meet potential pledges.
“Greekapalooza is basically a great way for OU’s Greek organizations to come together, fraternize, and unite behind a great cause,” said Chelsea Reed ’13. “It is the perfect kickoff for recruitment because it shows that Oglethorpe Greeks value community and philanthropy—both on campus and beyond.”
Photos by Robert Findley.
Dr. Schall first posted the article on his personal blog, My Own Stormy Petrel Words, reflecting on the question “why do people cheat” in response to the news of a data reporting scandal at Emory University. He says that cheating starts because people are acting to attain the unattainable “when so much is at stake and the wrong thing is being measured, even good people will bend the truth.” Dr. Schall’s article was picked for publication in the August 24th edition of Huffington magazine and will reach more than 115,000 iPad readers worldwide, with more users downloading every day.
The free weekly iPad magazine was launched mid-June 2012 as a part of a HuffPost “slows news movement” initiative, a way for readers to dive more deeply into stories than is possible online. iPad users can download the app to read Dr. Schall’s article in the iTunes store, and other readers can read the article directly on his blog. Consider subscribing to get his latest blogs delivered directly to you.