COLA Connections Newsletter: March 2014

From the Desk of the Dean

Finally. We made it. Oh, I know it’s not completely over yet, but the fact that the Redwings are tuning up in Fort Myers; that the blue-wing olives are hatching on Spring Creek; and that the days are growing noticeably longer tells me that we are putting some distance between us and this wretched winter. And so it is with this optimistic spirit of warm days ahead that the College of Liberal Arts presents this edition of its regular newsletter.

This issue profiles some wonderful individuals doing spectacular work in our college and in the community. First, we highlight the work of Dr. Michael Ruhling in the Department of Performance Arts and Visual Culture. Dr. Ruhling gives us a glimpse into the "life of the music teacher," and also gives us some insight into what it is like to plan and perform a concert played entirely on “period” instruments. Next, we look at Department of Communication alumni Steve Bodnar. During his time at RIT, Steve worked extensively on the Franz Wildenhain Exhibition and now works in higher education at William Hobart & Smith Colleges. Finally, we acknowledge one of our top students, Megan Moltrup, who is majoring in Museum Studies. Megan is making a difference through her work with the Cary Graphic Arts Collection in RIT’s Wallace Library.

We also want to share with gratitude the news of three significant gifts recently made to the College.

  • David M. Brooks has set up the David Brooks Advertising and Public Relations Fund. This fund will provide financial support for Advertising and Public Relations (APR) majors who are on unpaid internship assignments, as well as to support out-of-class experiences for APR majors by bringing industry speakers to campus.
  • Kraig Kayser, RIT trustee, has made a $250,000 gift to the College to support the new Center for the Study of Statesmanship, Law, and Liberty within our Political Science Department. This Center will support research by students and faculty on the role of statesmanship in democratic institutions.
  • Dr. Dane Gordon, Professor Emeritus with the Department of Philosophy and a faculty member for nearly 40 years, along with his wife Judith have committed over $300,000 to establish the Dane Gordon Fund for Student Success and a new Dane Gordon Lecture Series. The Department of Philosophy will host the lecture series, inviting scholars to campus to address the RIT and Rochester communities. RIT will also dedicate a seminar room located in Liberal Arts Hall in Dr. Gordon’s name as recognition of his gift.

We are immensely thankful to all of our donors whose contributions will allow our College to thrive and prosper well into the future.

Finally, our community expresses its sorrow for the loss of Dr. Frank Annunziata, Professor Emeritus in the Department of History who passed away in January. Frank served as a faculty member at Eisenhower College and then RIT for 43 years. He will be greatly missed.