<%@ Language=VBScript EnableSessionState=False %> <% on error resume next %> Salisbury University - Honors Program

Honors

 

Holloway Hall
The Saunterer

 

 

Newsletter of the Thomas E. Bellavance Honors Program

Salisbury University

Editor: Melyssa Malinowski, Dr. Richard England     

Writers: Rochelle Clarke, Eric Colvin, Tim Dowd, John Heath, Becky Johnson, Mike Kreisher, Dr. Tony Whall

December 10, 2001  Vol. 6 No. 1

Welcome to the Saunterer Like Thoreau in Walden, we will record our sauntering here, remembering that "if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."

Articles

Discovery

By Richard England

   

 

 

It’s an odd word. It seems that it ought to be reserved either for heroic visions of a Leiv Eiriksson stumbling onto an unexpected continent, or for comic book scientists with light-bulbs flickering over their distended crania, as they intuit the atomic structure of benzene or the secret formula for invisibility. But like all great words it has been cheapened by its popularity. Odd educational methods, academic speculations, successful sales techniques, TV channels, indeed, most new toothpaste flavors—all are heralded as “discoveries” until discovery itself is exhausted by its own diversity.

And yet it is still possible to walk out one morning and chance upon something you have never imagined or find something fundamentally new in what you had thought comfortably familiar. All education, with its books, boards, tests, and buildings, is really an apparatus for creating the circumstances for discovery. Teachers delight at the sight of a student aiming the prow of a longboat out of some well-known fjord and into the mist over open water.

This semester has been particularly heavy with discovery, as we explore a world made new by a closely felt tragedy and relearn the simple pleasures of the every-day. “Fields of Discovery” was the title of the National Honors Conference in Chicago, which a team of honors students flew out to despite the warnings that weekend about a “credible” (if undisclosed) threat. We learned a lot about honors, each other, and life in our journeys, and so this issue of The Saunterer presents some of the many small discoveries we made at that conference and in other Honors activities this semester. We hope you like it.

That toddling town...It was windy but WARM!

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NCHC 2001 in Chicago: An Overview

by Melyssa Malinowski

 

 

The National Collegiate Honors Council presented its annual conference, with the theme “Fields of Discovery,” from October 31 to November 4, at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago, IL. Eight Salisbury delegates set forth: the honorable

Dr. Whall, the distinguished Dr. England, and the following six students, who merit no adjectives: Rochelle Clarke, Eric Colvin, Tim Dowd, Linda Grimmer, John Heath, and Melyssa Malinowski.

We arrived in Chicago on Wednesday night and enjoyed a very brief free evening. The next day we went on our “City as Text” expedition. The purpose of these sessions, an integral part of any NCHC conference, is to teach you how to “read” a city. You select one location to visit from a list of about eight. You are given directions and a list of things to look at or for and then off you go. Some of the choices this year were: the Navy Pier, the Museum Campus, the Loop, and Hyde Park. We all jumped on the bus to the Museum Campus, which was a little like the Mall in D.C.. Rochelle, Linda and I went to tour the Field Museum and the Shedd Aquarium, while John, Tim and Eric explored the Adler Planetarium. We enjoyed our explorations, despite very tired feet and legs at the end of the day.

That evening we met as a group, led by our fearless Dr. Whall, and were instructed to attend at least three breakout sessions which would inform us about how we could improve the program. Other than that, we could go to as many of the other sessions we desired. We all skimmed through our 178 page (not a typo!) conference programs. We decided what sessions we wanted to attend as well as who we would go with. Just to give you an idea of the diversity of session topics here are some of the titles:

Service Learning and Leadership Education

Creating Community in a New Honors Program

Honors Student Survival Cuisine

Rediscovering Napoleon

Poetry of the City (starring Dr. Whall)

Discovering Van Gogh’s Lost Night Sky

This is just a brief selection. There were topics in every possible discipline and area of interest.

In addition to the sessions, we all attended the Gala on Friday night. All I can say about that is that all of us look very nice when we dress up. (More details in Rochelle Clarke’s article!)

The next day we all enjoyed a banquet lunch together. We were all so excited about the sessions we attended and bursting with ideas. The idea we’re currently running with is an orientation session for new honors students, including a brief stay before the term begins and experienced honors students acting as mentors. If anyone is interested in helping out with this, or has suggestions for other ways we can improve the program, please let us know.

Now, read on, about some of the other kinds of discoveries that we made in Chicago.

Dr. England thinks he is a caribou...

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The Plane Truth

by Eric Colvin

 

My Experiences While Flying

Part of the adventure of our honors conference involved flying to and from Chicago. While it was agreed by all that the wild drive from O’Hare Airport to the hotel in the airport shuttle was the most dangerous part of the trip, we still felt some apprehension about flying. There was no need for worry though. At every point in our travels we were guarded by numerous national guardsmen and security personnel. Before boarding the airplanes, we were sent through the standard metal detectors and then scanned with a hand metal detector. On later flights, passengers were randomly selected to have their carry-on bags searched, even after the bags went through the x-ray machines. I walked through a metal detector holding my coat and then set it down while I was hand scanned, but the armed guards stationed in the airport realized that my coat had not passed through the x-ray machine, and so it was hand searched. Our jet flight from Philadelphia to Chicago had perhaps 30 people on board, about as many as had been on our twin-propeller plane from Salisbury to Philadelphia! Returning home both flights were full, but I was still able to sit in a window seat. Every airport had the armed guards and metal detectors and random searches, and I believe we all felt secure the entire time.

The flights could be considered the most valuable part of the conference. To be separated from the world with 30 other people is simply amazing. Flying will never cease to astound me. The rush of adrenaline felt as the plane climbed to 30 thousand feet or decelerated after coming back into contact with the earth provides a stark contrast to the calm and peace experienced above the clouds. Being up above the clouds is truly an awe-inspiring time. To see the glimmer of the sun in that white perfect world is incredible. During the turns, while looking straight down, one is able to see a perfect miniature world through the gaps in the clouds. All imperfections seen while on the ground are lost in that breathless view. Sunday I was fortunate enough to be able to spend time with God in his Word through my devotions, while soaring above the ground. It is rare that I am able to be both mentally and physically closer to God. The splendor of God’s creation is truly amazing!

Almost equally amazing was the amount of planning and precision that I realized are needed to run an airport. While waiting on the tarmac at O’Hare I noticed through the double-paned windows that our flight was 10th in line for take off, yet we were not waiting for very long before becoming airborne. Also noteworthy was that there were constantly planes landing on the same runway so the takeoffs were staggered. Before boarding the plane we were sitting in a position that easily afforded us the view of the planes landing, and there were always two planes to be seen off in the distance approaching to land.

I understand the anxiety felt by many about flying due to recent events, but I will continue to enjoy the precision and freedom that flight allows. The theme of the conference was “Fields of Discovery.” We were able to discover fields of marvel and splendor while flying. Nothing can take the place of feeling the powerful thrust as the wheels leave the ground and the spirit is able to take flight into a world of wonder and beauty.

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A Miniature Pilgrimage

by Tim Dowd

In my spare time in Chicago I went to see the Bahai (Ba-high) House of Worship in Wilmette, a suburb of Chicago, and I think that this experience has changed my life. I am not a member of the Bahai Faith, although in recent months I have been investigating its writings, opinions, and values. I think everyone’s personal spiritual journey is what they make of it, and is as deep and fulfilling as they want it to be, so I will keep the focus of this article on my experience of the Bahai House of Worship, and not about the religion itself.

To get to the House from downtown Chicago involves an hour-long train ride along the northwest side of Lake Michigan. My directions instructed me to take a right out of the final train station and to proceed two blocks. When I walked out of the last train station, I found myself in a very charming little neighborhood. I started walking down the two blocks and saw beautiful homes in rows on both sides of a red cobblestone street. I immediately thought I was lost, because I knew that the temple was huge and could surely be seen from a distance away, but just to make sure, I completely followed the directions and walked the two blocks. Just as I approached the end of the street, the great white dome appeared through the branches of two oak trees.

The placard reads “All are Welcome”

I continued to approach the building and was almost breathless with anxiety and wonder. Full of awe, I snapped a few photographs of the marvelous building and its gardens, and then headed down into the visitor center. There, I saw a film that explained the formation of the Bahai faith and some facts about the House of Worship. I also went into the gift shop to buy some literature consisting of prayer books and different tablets, which I planned to “christen” in the worship area.

.

The worship area, which is the floor above the visitor center, is a huge circular room with an extremely high ceiling that extends to the dome’s summit. I found a seat, took a few deep breaths, and began to read a couple of small prayers. After each prayer, I would look up and reflect on what I just read. After two or three prayers, I leaned my head back and gazed up at the staggeringly high ceiling. I realized that I had sat in the exact center of this great circular room, where a symbol which translates to, “God is the all glorious,” faces down at all of the visitors of the building. I immediately became full of emotion. Tears welled up in my eyes and my chest surged with something that was so foreign to me, a great eagerness, a yearning, a wonderful sense of connectedness. I sat there, very still for many moments, soaking in all of these feelings. After a short while, I gathered my things and left, taking one last look at the worship area, then one last look at the building. It was an amazing experience, and while it wasn’t an “official” part of my “Fields of Discovery” conference experience, it certainly represented a field of discovery to me.

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A Soiree at Sue's

by Rochelle Clarke and Richard England

 

A Soirée at Sue’s

by Rochelle Clarke and Richard England

The highlight of this year's National Collegiate Honors Council conference was definitely the gala which was held at the Field Museum The museum was founded in 1893 and has been steadily filling its stately neo-classical galleries with historical, anthropological, and of course, natural history specimens. It was a splendid venue for a formal gala. Well bedecked in finery, our little delegation set out for what promised to be a wonderful evening with "Sue." Led by our brave and courageous assistant director, Dr. Richard England, we joined the thronging thousand or so conference attendees boarding tourist trolleybuses that would transport us for the night.

The women of the group, radiant in their one piece gowns, and indebted to the inventors of hairspray and gel, were held up a moment at the bag check area, part of the extra security laid on during that weekend. We were greeted by the hostess of the evening's proceedings, Sue, who happens to be the largest, most complete and most famous Tyrannosaurus Rex in the world. She stood proudly, 14 feet high, surrounded by tables of an extensive array of hors d’oeuvres, appetizers, and desserts on the museum's main floor. Sue did not dine, despite the temptation we provided by fattening ourselves up into delicious morsels for a 67 million year old top predator.

Melyssa and Rochelle decided to take a stab at our Asian dinner with chopsticks. These were soon abandoned for forks after we realized that the sticks only succeeded in making us even hungrier.

The evening was then ours for mingling and viewing a few of the many exhibits such as the Underground Adventure, Africa and Pacific Spirits exhibits. These were explored at length by all.

Dr. England, with his usual taste for all things evolutionary, ate then raced through the natural history halls, taking in the botanical exhibits. He took a wrong turn and found himself in a closed exhibit on the Cambrian explosion. He crawled his way up through the Silurian, Permian, Triassic, and Jurassic periods, marveling at the displays of fossils and dinosaur reconstructions, until he stepped over a “Caution—exhibit closed” sign and found himself once more in the hubbub of the recent Holocene.

There was hardly enough time to take in the splendid Cleopatra exhibit, which featured items from ancient Rome and Egypt, as well as from golden age Hollywood (Elizabeth Taylor made a great Cleopatra.) There was also a collection of brilliant quotes about the (in?) famous queen. In the words of T. Gaultier, she was “a person to be wondered at, to whom the poets have been able to add nothing, and whom dreamers find always at the end of their dreams." A bit dated as a pick-up line perhaps, but it summarizes a very powerful and romantic exhibit nicely.

 

Cleopatra: The Musical. Which one of these hopefuls will get the leading role of Marc Antony?

Alas! The evening came to an end only too soon and it was time to say goodbye to Sue and depart in our royal trolleys.

 

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 Stars by Vincent

by John Heath

 

 

 

During my recent stint in Chicago for the National Collegiate Honors Conference, I had the pleasure of experiencing a blitzkrieg of culture – a plethora of Honors-related breakout sessions, huge servings of Chicagoan chow, an evening of poetry and jazz music, a morning of get-ya-goin’-Gospel music, a stroll along the Navy Pier, a trip to the Adler Planetarium, a catered soirée at the Field Museum, and a few hours at the Art Institute of Chicago. Of all these enjoyable experiences, my encounter with Vincent van Gogh was the most memorable aspect of my Chicago experience.

On reading the Honors Conference Guide, one particular “breakout” session caught my attention. I noticed that there was a presentation titled, “Discovering Van Gogh’s Lost Night Sky” given by students in Southwest Texas State University’s Honors Program. The goal of this session was to explain how they had, through an Honors Course, discovered the actual house in the painting White House at Night as well as the date and time of the painting, and the identity of the mysterious star featured in it. I have had a vague affinity for Van Gogh’s paintings ever since I caught sight of The Starry Night in a high school French textbook. I was a little dubious that a group of students had anything worthwhile or groundbreaking to say about a Van Gogh painting. Out of curiosity, yet with low expectations, I decided to go to the session on this painting, which had been discovered just a few decades ago.

I sat at the back of the room in case the session was dull and waited for the academic droning to commence. I had no idea that the students standing at the front of that stuffy chamber had actually made a series of monumental discoveries in the world of Van Gogh. Over the next hour and 15 minutes, I was dazzled by an impeccable multimedia presentation.

They explained how they read letters from Van Gogh to his brother alongside historical and astronomical documents in order to discover when and where Van Gogh painted his White House at Night. Impressively, most of their work was done in their classroom, yet they took their theory to the road, proving their hunches during a summer trip to Auvers, France. The main discoveries proved to be their finding the actual house depicted in the painting, pinpointing the actual day in which Van Gogh painted White House, and discovering that Venus is the actual mysterious star above the Van Gogh’s White House.

White House at Night by Vincent van Gogh.

By an incredibly lucky coincidence, the biggest Van Gogh exhibit ever to be held in America was happening that very same weekend at the Art Institute of Chicago. It featured works by Gauguin and Van Gogh and explored their mutual influences. Even though tickets were twenty bucks, I decided I was going to drag my friends to the exhibit the next day.

The next day I learned that it was more than a worthwhile investment. Despite the heat and press of the overcrowded galleries, I seized the opportunity to see some of the most beautiful paintings in the world. I joined the people gazing at paintings, discovering the mutual influences of this Dutch and French friendship. Van Gogh’s self-portraits were stunningly realistic. One I particularly noted showed van Gogh’s shortened mussed red hair, early morning stubble, and drunken red-eyes.

I was boggled by his color choices; his mind-bending swirls of white and various blues as he psychedelically spun the sky in his landscape paintings. Gauguin was nothing to joke about either; I saw the joy of life within the eyes of his Tahitians and his loving feelings for Van Gogh as he paid tribute to him in Sunflowers on an Armchair. Sunflowers were one of Van Gogh’s personal favorite subjects.

I saw how they each strove to outdo each other with artistic challenges, painting similar objects with vastly different approaches. I made my way through the exhibit only to find that the Institute only held three of the five Starry Nights. Although the Institute did not have White House at Night, I was able to see many other van Gogh paintings and gaze at them. While all aspects of my trip to Chicago were enriching, I will never forget my meeting with Vincent van Gogh.

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Spring 2002 Course Offerings

 

 

 

 

Here are the courses and faculty that current Honors students are being offered in the spring of 2002.

HONR 112 Issues in Social Sciences: Politics and Conflict (Core II)                   Greg Cashman (2 sections)

HONR 112 Issues in Social Sciences: Revolutions of Thought (Core II)                   Kevin Birch

HONR212 Issues in Natural Sciences (Core IV) 
                      Richard England (2 sections)

HONR311 Outlaws in Literature 
                      Gary Harrington

HONR311 Don Quixote 
                      Keith Brower

HONR311 Local Environmental History 
                     Michael Lewis

HONR311 The Culture of the Great War 
                     Stephen Gehnrich/Tony Whall

HONR312 Honors Research/ Creative Project 
                     Tony Whall

HONR490 Honors Thesis Preparation 
                     Tony Whall

HONR495 Honors Thesis 
                     Tony Whall

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9-11:  The Colloquia

 

 

 

 

Tim Kane entered the Honors Program in 1998, and although he hasn’t been actively involved in the program since he completed the core last year, we knew he would be willing to be a featured speaker at one of our colloquia (aka “Mind Shrapnel and Cookies”) devoted to the September 11th attacks. This past summer, Tim did an internship in New York City’s Office of Emergency Management in a multi-million dollar operations center that took up a complete floor of the building now known to us as World Trade Center #5. Obviously, he did a remarkable job for them, because on September 12th, barely 24 hours after the attacks, they called Tim, asking him to leave school and return to the city to help them with the difficult work of recovery and salvage and efforts to get things back to normal - or as near normal as possible. Tim left for Manhattan immediately and ended up working in the recovery efforts for several weeks.

 

 

As Tim reported in his colloquy in the Honors Center on October 18th, he worked 12-16 hours each day in a new control center set up in midtown, several blocks from Ground Zero. When he could, he escaped to his brother Gabe’s apartment to bathe and sleep, or he’d walk down to the river and sleep for a few hours on the hospital ship, USNS Comfort. “For the first few days it was total chaos,” Tim told the overflow audience, as he showed them before and after aerial photos of the devastation. “I walked in the door the first day, was handed a phone and radio, and was told I was in charge of ‘logistics.’ No explanation, no training. There wasn’t time. I didn’t even know what logistics were!”

As it turned out, he was in charge of coordinating the delivery of supplies to the recovery and construction teams at Ground Zero and attempting to control traffic in and around the site. “The volunteers were, finally, a large part of the problem,” Tim said. “They would come into the city with truckloads of donated supplies—boots, gloves, water, tools—and want to take them down to the WTC. I finally had to forbid a few of them from proceeding with their individual plans, and, seriously, I almost came to blows with one outraged guy. These volunteers had so much emotion invested in their work, and they wouldn’t sleep, and they’d lose perspective about what was important.”

The audience, mainly students, asked Tim detailed questions about the recovery effort, about dangers remaining at the site, and about rumors they had heard about millions of dollars of gold buried beneath the rubble (“true”) and about the FBI and CIA presence around the scene. Finally, after Tim had made it clear that he believed we were justified in using our military might to go after Osama bin Laden, a student challenged him to consider what devastation we might inflict on the innocent people of Afghanistan. Tim explained that he understood the moral complexity of the issue, but, he concluded, almost in a whisper, “We must do something.”

Tom Boudreau, a visiting scholar with Salisbury’s new Conflict Resolution Program, introduced students to another aspect of the aftermath of the September terrorist attacks. An overflow crowd of political science students and honors students looked on as he addressed the question: “Is your country at war a spectator sport?” His answer, of course, was no—but he went further than the students perhaps expected by enacting a mock draft board. Before a large American flag, students were called to the front of the room, their “draft papers” were examined, and they were asked whether they were willing to report for duty as requested. Dr. Boudreau and Dr. Richard England, in the personae of draft board officials, were quite successful in raising a squad of infantry from the surprised students. Only one student refused to go, despite the dire warnings of jail. It was all Dr. England could do to stay in character and not tell the student that the other option was to dodge the draft in Canada.

The point of the exercise was not to test students’ patriotism, but to make them investigate their own idea of their responsibility (if any) to their country in a time of war. Was conscientious objection possible? Was it ethical? Were there non-military actions citizens ought to be taking to support the war effort? The questions were explored both in the classroom and afterwards in the corridor as our mock troops drifted back to class, and the changing world around them.

We are enjoying the fruits of further co-operation with the Center for Conflict Resolution as the Honors Center hosts a reception on December 11th (about the time we’ll have printed this!) for Giandomenico Picco, the Under Secretary General of the United Nations. Picco is best known for his role in negotiations which led to the release of western hostages in Lebanon in 1991 (including Terry Waite). Picco will be speaking about international terrorism and about building communications between civilizations.

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The Great Tree Debate

by Richard England

 

 

On a rather lighter note (I foolishly thought) the “Mind Shrapnel’n’Cookies” held a (semi-)formal debate on a matter of pressing civic concern: real or fake? That’s right, we argued about Christmas trees. Speeches by Drs. Tony Whall (tree murderer) and England (faker) featured almost all of the logical fallacies they’d spent the semester warning their HONR111 students about: Dr. Whall lambasted his opponents as cold-hearted mechanists (ad hominem) and said real trees were just better (begging the question). Dr. England retaliated with the charge that real trees were murdered (false analogy and faulty emotional appeal) and concluded that real tree fans were all motivated by a pathetic desire to get “back to nature” (hasty generalization). Melyssa Malinowski and John Heath ably backed up their faculty partners, and before long the question was thrown to the floor. The assembled audience had lots of questions and comments. The main surprise was the presence of a student who was also a Christmas tree farmer (!): he stunned us with his detailed pleas for the utility and recycle-ability of real firs, and ably commented on the viability of certain species under the rainless conditions experienced by the Eastern Shore over the last six weeks.

The vote was held, and the real tree opinion was victorious. The plastic tree was thought an abomination. And so, even as I type, a real tree sits quietly dying in the Honors Center living room, decorated (or as John Heath put it, “desecrated”) in bright lights. It is beautiful, and it does have a lovely scent, but be warned—the champions of a PVC-Yule will rise again. Next year, next year....

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Semester Fun!

 

 

 

Trip to D.C.: Unfortunately, recent events compelled us to post-pone our trip to Manhattan (we’d scheduled it for mid-September), so we set off for the delights of Washington, D.C., instead. After enjoying the Mall, we went to Ford’s Theater for a matinee stage adaptation of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. The evening saw us in Georgetown, shopping and enjoying the local restaurants. A long day, but an excellent trip. Next semester, Times Square

Quoth the Raven: The Honor's House Halloween Celebration was a grand success this year. Jack-o-lanterns glinted in the Japanese garden, chocolate biscuits and hot pies abounded and a host of talented guests shared some scary stories with an appreciative audience of thrill seekers. Dr. Tony Whall began the evening with a dramatic tale of ghostly music and shared the candelabra-lit hot seat with Drs. Gerry St.Martin, Lee May, Bill Zak and Richard England. Our visiting scholar, Dr. Tom Boudreau, was especially gracious when Dr. England's basset, singularly unsuccessful in his dramatic role as the Hound of the Baskervilles, snored soulfully at a particularly suspenseful moment in his narration. All present agreed that a tradition was in the making and we look forward to having our socks frightened off in atmospheric surroundings again next year.

Deck the House: That’s what some of the students might have been singing last week, when we launched ourselves into the annual frenzy of seasonal decorating. With a little ingenuity and courage, students were swinging extension cords from one window to the next, shinnying up trees, tacking up lights, and generally going tastefully over the top with holiday decor. Dr. Richard England, son of an insurance broker and blessed with an all too lively imagination, looked on in prayerful horror as two students navigated the roof to ornament a portico with lights. Luckily, all went well: the roof line looks splendid, and we had no cause to become better acquainted with the fine points of the university’s liability policy. The tree was trimmed in beautiful style, and personalized stockings were hung over the gas fireplace for Dr. England & Tony Whall, their spouses, and Dr. England’s quietly omnipresent basset, Wrinkles (who doesn’t want socks this year). Special thanks go to Liz Wood (the tree climber), Linda Grimmer, Eric Colvin, Stephanie “I-like climbing-out-of-high-windows” Kowalski, Tim Dowd, John Heath, Rochelle Clarke, and, of course, that indefatigable shopper, Melyssa Malinowski.

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Archeological Discovery at the Honors Center (by Becky Johnson and Mike Kreisher)

 

 

 

Recently, the constant digging up of waterlines for the pump in the goldfish pond brought some ancient artifacts to light. A few weeks ago, Honors students Mike Kreisher and Becky Johnson, happened on some clay tablets in a pile of earth. Thanks to their exposure to the Babylonian myth of Gilgamesh in their HONR 211 class, taught by Nancy Mitchell, and a crash course in Akkadian Semitic, they’ve manage to piece together fragments of a narrative that is curiously similar in style to that of Gilgamesh. Experts at the British Museum and the Smithsonian, have been sent copies, and we eagerly await their comments on this exciting new text. It would be rash for me to try to anticipate their explanations of some apparent curiosities in the text (I for one, didn’t know that the Babylonians had Honors programs), and it may be that the experts will refine Mike and Becky’s translation. I ask you to peruse the fragments below with an open mind and a willingness to enter into the spirit of a culture both very different, and curiously similar to our own. Without further introduction then, here it is— the fabled epic of

WHALLGAMESH

Of him who knew the most of all men know;
Who made the journey; heartbroken; reconciled;

Who knew the way things were before AOL Instant Messenger;
The secret things, the mystery; who went

To the end of Maryland, and over; who returned,
And wrote the story in The Saunterer.

He built the Honors House. He built the keeping place
Of the pool table and the ping pong table. The gazebo

Sits in the sun like dullest wood; the inner
Classroom is beyond the imagining of students.

Study the brickwork, study the fortification;
Climb the ancient staircase to the leather room;

Study how it is set up; from the leather room see
The giant TV and white tiger print, front and rear of the house.

This is the Honors House, the city of Dr. Whall
The Wild Ox, son of his father, son

Of his mother, Dr. Whall
The head and maintenance of the Honors Students

Shadow of darkness over Loblolly Lane,
The Web, the Flood that rises to wash away

The slackers in the Honors Program, Dr. Whall
The smartest one of all, the perfect, the terror.

[break—here the tablets are illegible—we next see a different character altogether.]

One day a slacker came to the quad
And saw Dr. England; he stood expressionless,

Astonished; then with his slacker friends he went,
Back to his dorm, fear in his belly.

His mouth was hanging open because of what he realized.
He spoke to his RA and said, “RA,

I saw a floppy-haired man today
In the quad, knowledgeable as the president

Of Harvard, he learns in the library
With the students; he visits the quad

With hound dog; he has filled my mind and filled
My schedule; the students of his class

Never have time. The Canadian teaches them
Because of him I am no longer a partier.

[break—there follows a passage in which Dr. England is introduced to an English professor,

Dr. Mitchell, who brings him to the kingdom of Dr. Whall. In this concluding section, the English professor speaks to Dr. England and explains how Dr. Whall had foreknowledge of his arrival]

“While you were speaking incoherently to the students
Before your mind had any understanding,

His mind, a gift to the gifted of the administration,
Had a memo of you before you knew of him.

In the early morning Dr. Whall arose
And told his wife of the memo: ‘I had a memo.

A Canadian fell from the sky, an Englishman
And spoke in the gardens behind the Honors House.

The students came and wondered at it.
I wanted to push it into the pond but could not.

I was drawn to it as if it were an English professor.’
All-knowing Mrs. Whall spoke to him.....

‘That Canadian that fell from the sky, the English man
that spoke in the gardens behind the Honors House....

Is the intelligent companion, smart as a Canadian
The Englishman of Canada, a gift of the administration.

That you were drawn to as if drawn to an English professor
Means that this companion will not forsake you.

He will ease your workload and teach your students.
This is the fortunate meaning of your memo.’

Then Dr. Whall the lord of the Honors House said:
‘May the memo as you interpret come to pass.’”

The English professor thus told the tale.

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Hi Dr, Whall! Alumni News.

 

 

 

Hi Dr. Whall! - Alumni News

David Holland (1990), his wife, Chris, and two children, Joel and Rebekah, are back on the Eastern Shore after a year of missionary work in Mexico, China, and Turkey. They’ll be moving soon to Nashville (no, not to begin a music career) to work at the Youth With A Mission headquarters until their next call to mission. In the family newsletter they publish to keep their friends and relatives informed about their work, David wrote the following: “The day we flew from Chicago to Turkey, I stopped in a used bookstore and bought copies of The Merchant of Venice and Henry V to read on the 10-hour flight. While in the city of Konya—and just as I was finishing The Merchant of Venice—we asked a man named Kadir for directions. He enjoyed talking with us and invited us to his home that evening.

As we talked he told me he loved English literature, especially Shakespeare. “What’s your favorite work?” I asked him. He replied, The Merchant of Venice. I told him the story about buying the book for the trip to Turkey, and we agreed that God had orchestrated our meeting. Kadir continues to e-mail us.

 

Heather Campbell (1993) is a Ph.D. candidate in Spanish at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. She wrote recently: Things here are going okay. I passed my Ph.D qualifying exams in August (all those writing skills I honed in my honors classes stood me in good stead I guess since they told me it was one of the best written exams they had seen!), so now I am trying to get my butt in gear to write the dissertation prospectus and get started. My dissertation director has just retired from the department this past July, but agreed to continue to work with me and one other woman, provided we go ahead and get the thing written. So that gives me a little incentive. I am writing on theatrical monologues written by women playwrights in Spain in the 20th century. It's kind of exciting because there's very little written on the monologues and I have about 35-40 of them to work with. It is also interesting because I am applying feminist theory to analyze them, and what I'm finding is that what these playwrights are writing is what the women novelists were writing about 10 to 15 years ago.

 

Stephanie Havenner (1994) I just saw your e-mail address and wanted to share some news. Shawn (Kastle) (1994) and I had a baby boy April 30th. His name is Quinn Irie Kastle and weighed 9 lbs. 7.5oz. He is now 14 lbs. at 12 weeks old. We have our hands full and are loving every minute of being parents. You should see Shawn. He is very proud.

Hope to drop by when we are in the area.

 

Christina (Halter) Minkiewiscz (1995) I’ve been meaning to write since I received the latest issue of The Saunterer, but have been a little busier than usual. Frank and I are happy to announce the birth of our daughter, Zoë Marie, on June 20, 2001. She was a whopping 10 lbs 2 ozs, 22 1/2" long! We are extremely blessed to have this beautiful angel here on earth with us. I still cannot believe that she is here! We just returned this weekend from a visit up to Frederick to visit Todd (1994) and Alison (Frame) Humphrey (1995) and their son Noah. Alison Humphrey has agreed to be Zoë’s Godmother at her baptism in September.

Alison and I were talking this weekend about time and how our plans after college have been altered. She pointed out that we've known each other for nearly 10 years now, and I nearly fell out of my chair. I never would have believed that I would be where I am now, but I wouldn't trade for anything. I am a stay-at-home mom to our beautiful, almost 8-week-old daughter. I couldn't ask for a better place right now. Alison and Todd are expecting another child in December and have a terrific house.

Anyway, I seem to be wandering a little bit myself. I hear that the Honor's Program just keeps getting better and more diverse every year, and I think that's wonderful. Do you still get to do the trips every year up to the mountains or to the Everglades?

 

Jeannine Rood (1995), who works as an accountant in San Francisco, wrote in June: I know that it has been a long time since I have talked to you. Just wanted to send you a message to let you know that all is well with her in sunny California. I am still living just outside San Francisco. I am in the East Bay, as they call it here. Work is going well, but slightly crazy.

I will be back on the East Coast in August. I am moving back to New Jersey to finish school and be close to my family. I am really looking forward to being closer to everyone. Maybe I will have to take a trip down and see you when school is back in session.

Hope that all is well with you.

 

Brooks Truitt (1995) The last eight months have been eventful for me. I moved from Connecticut to Houston, TX, in February to be with my fiancée. Since my job can be done from anywhere I have access to a phone line and Internet connection, I was able to transfer my job. So, now I am working from my home office. By the way, I work for Gartner Group in Stamford, CT, as a research analyst. We do research on growing businesses and on consumer usage of home technologies. I assist senior analysts in analyzing and reporting data and also work very closely with our clients.

In July, I got married. The wedding was held at a gazebo in Huntsville, TX, where Lisa attended college. As you might imagine, it was hot and uncomfortable. The cicadas serenaded us, however, and there was a nice breeze from time to time. We honeymooned in Colorado, spending five days in Rocky Mountain National Park. We hiked, fished, went sightseeing and wildlife watching. Lisa and I were so excited because we saw our first moose, elk, and coyotes in the wild! From there we moved on down to Colorado Springs and saw the usual tourist things. We liked it so much that we're planning to move to the Denver area next fall!

This fall I made a foray back into teaching college. I am teaching two classes, Introduction to Composition and Introduction to Literature, at North Harris Community College in Houston. It had been four years since I’d taught a course, so I felt rusty. It's been really nice being back in academia, though I must admit that teaching two courses and holding a full-time job is starting to take its toll on me.

I'll most likely make my annual pilgrimage to Salisbury when my wife and

I come up at Christmas. Hope to see you then.

 

Heather Small (1997) Hi all! Or maybe that should read “y'all”, seeing as I have recently moved to the South. That's right, after four years in BEAUTIFUL Seattle, I have moved to Alabama. No one would come visit me in Seattle so I decided to try someplace a bit closer.

Actually, I moved because I'm getting married! My fiancé’s name is Ben Blasingame and he now lives in Florence, AL. If you want to hear all the details of how a Seattleite ended up engaged to a 'Bama boy, you can look up our Web page on www.theknot.com. Anyway, the wedding is March 2nd, and I am currently living with my sister in the Birmingham area while I look for a job in Florence and plan the wedding. I also have a part time job at Mail Boxes, etc. until I can find something more permanent.

It's great to be back on the East Coast, close to my family and loved ones. I am adjusting to the culture shock that is southern living, and I miss lots of things about Seattle, especially my friends. However, I am looking forward to seeing at least some of them in March at the wedding.

If any of you are in the B-ham area, I'd love to hear from you!

 

Becca Brooks (1998) (with whom I meet now and again for lunch this year) sent me an e-mail report from her desk across town to include in The Saunterer: I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in May 2001 with a Master’s in Library Science and am now the archivist for the Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture at Salisbury University. Among other important tasks, I get to look all the old yearbooks of the University - Dr. Whall you haven't always been gray and Joe Gilbert didn't always have a beard! Although I'm happy to be back by the beach after two years in Texas, I loved living in Austin with its spicy food, live music, and cowboys!

 

Kari (Moxey) Schoerner (1998) I'm working now for the Department of the Navy at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, MD. I write contracts to purchase anything needed by the fleet. Since September 11th, I've gotten to work on a number of "hot" issues concerning national security, which has been really interesting. I got married this past May to another SU graduate, Jeff Schoerner. We're still in that newlywed state, and things are going well. I'm halfway toward completion of my master's degree in management with a concentration in procurement and contracts. I'm taking my classes online through UMUC. I like the online format; I'm just tired of school. I wish I could take a semester off work and just finish the degree.

 

Jenny Pruitt (1998) reported recently that she had graduated from Wake Forest Law School in May and was preparing to take the Bar exam in February. Sandwiched between those two events, the indefatigable Ms. Pruitt Esq. is teaching Business Law and “Real Property” (is there any other kind?) at Forsythe Technical community college in Winston-Salem and applying to the Keenan-Flagler graduate program in accounting at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

 

Doug Zwiselsberger (1998) Sure has been a while. By now you must be saying, "kids, they graduate and become so unreliable." Since I promised you over a year ago that I would send you an update and never followed through on my promise. Well hopefully this will make amends for my tardiness!

Since I graduated from “SSU” (there will always be a second "S" in my mind!) in 1998, I have been working for a consulting firm called Booz | Allen | Hamilton in McLean, Virginia. I work primarily on government clients and have enjoyed the many projects that I have been involved with. My main client is located in Honolulu, HI. So I get to enjoy a trip out there once or twice a year.

I am currently pursuing my master's from Johns Hopkins University. I will graduate in May 2003 with a master’s in information and telecommunications systems for business. JHU comes to my company and teaches. It is a great format for those of us that work full time. It is a cohort setup, with classes once a week for seven weeks. Each class is three and a half hours long.  There is also a Saturday class for five hours. It is pretty intense, but it allows us to complete our program in two and a half years.

Outside of the work and academic world, I am staying active by playing soccer in a men’s amateur league and softball. No sleep for the weary...

 

Lindsey Clime (1999) wrote recently: So nice to hear from you! I am doing fairly well, incredibly stressed with graduate school - but I am getting by. I am at the University of Maryland, working on my master’s in criminology and criminal justice. It is exciting but challenging. The year between undergraduate and graduate school, I floated through a couple of jobs--trying to find my niche and ultimately throwing up my hands and returning to school. The only exciting part of that year was my working for Outward Bound in Baltimore. (I am still employed for the summers.) I get to take a group of high schoolers into the wilderness of western Maryland for two-weeks at a time and teach them all about survival, responsibility, and life.

Anyway, that's about all thus far. I am still searching for my “calling” and I hope to find it sometime before I turn 60! Thanks and feel free to reach me at my new e-mail - lclime@accmail.umd.edu.

 

Todd Cooper (1999) came for a visit in May and in October sent this update about his graduate studies in environmental science and management at the University of California at Santa Barbara: Everything's going well here in Santa Barbara, CA. My flight back to LA was uneventful. I'm currently taking classes in applied population ecology and principles of biological mitigation and remediation, as well as working on a group thesis, "Wetland Mitigation Alternatives for the Casmalia Resources Hazardous Waste Disposal Site." I've also applied for an internship for winter quarter with NOAA's Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary division.

Todd also sent his e-mail address along, (tcooper37@hotmail.com)—and I’d like to encourage all of you to let me publish your e-mail addresses so that you could all stay in better touch.

 

Katie Kirby (1999) I'm now in my third year of the Ph.D. program here at Fordham, and, although my workload increases every semester, I'm very much enjoying it. I took part of my comprehensive exams, so I now have the unofficial M.A. in philosophy (which you sort of earn-along-the-way to the Ph.D.). I have to admit that this task was certainly the most difficult intellectual hurdle I've ever encountered. The comprehensive exams are very difficult here, requiring a fairly sophisticated understanding of the history of philosophy -- ancient, medieval, and modern. I take the second half in January, in order to continue on the Ph.D. course. Despite a great deal of nervousness, I'm hoping all will go well.

I was also lucky enough to start teaching this semester, which was unexpected, as graduate students normally don't get the opportunity to teach until the spring of their third year. However, I had a connection through my past assistantship position where I advised and tutored student-athletes, so I was offered a position teaching Philosophy of Human Nature in the Liberal Studies/ Adult Degree Program. I can honestly say that I love it! It's like I've finally discovered what I'm good at! The class is going very well, and I think that I've even hooked a few of them on philosophy. (Dr. Miller, aren't you proud?)

As far as my direction philosophically is concerned, I think I'm headed toward specializing in either Heidegger (with some connections here and there to environmental ethics) or Postmodernists such as Levinas, Derrida, etc. At this point, I'm hoping to start writing more, and eventually seek publications and presentation spots, although these endeavors are, of course, extremely intimidating. I did get to present a paper on Heidegger and technology at the annual Society for Philosophy and Technology conference in Aberdeen, Scotland, this past July. It was great fun and provided a comforting window into the world of professional philosophy. (And I got a nice vacation around Scotland and to Iceland out of the deal!)

All in all, I'm having a great time at Fordham -- there are some really great people in the department, both students and faculty. And, of course, much of the strictly academic climate normally associated with graduate study has taken second seat to what has been more than a tragedy for New York. Luckily, everyone I know who either works in the Trade Center or lives nearby is fine -- a bit shaken, but alright. I was amazed to see all of the people volunteering and mourning with one another in the days after the attack, especially having known the colder, less compassionate face of the typical New Yorker. It's still very tense up here, and there's a certain dread that underlies all of our daily activities. But at least people are looking each other in the eye now, and life doesn't seem to be moving so fast. So that's about it. I hope that all is well in Salisbury.

Jocelyn Wright (1999) I am currently finishing my master's degree in physical therapy at the University of Delaware in Newark, DE. I finish didactic training the beginning of February and begin six months of clinical internships all in the Salisbury-Lower Delaware area. I will graduate one week after my 25th birthday and will enter the big, bad world-hopefully gainfully employed so I can pay off student loans. I have gotten the chance to attend national conferences for the American Physical Therapy Association in Indianapolis, IN, Dallas, TX, and Anaheim, CA. I've become quite a baseball fan and have acquaintances who should be playing in the Majors within the next two seasons. My parents, my grandmother and myself are planning a trip to Europe after graduation and I am looking for places to visit. Any suggestions? School has done a lot to teach my about who I am and what my strengths and weaknesses are. I still miss Salisbury and think of it as home. All in all, life is good.

The Thomas E. Bellavance Honors Program

Bellavance Honors Center

1101 Camden Avenue

Salisbury, MD 21801