Tuesday, May 26, 2015

BW to Broadway Touted on WKYC-TV and Huffington Post

BW's acclaimed Music Theatre program is shining in the media spotlight once again. A WKYC-TV report on the BW to Broadway pipeline featured Zach Adkins '15,  BW music theatre director Victoria Bussert and BW music theatre chair Scott Plate, plus a shout out for Kyle Jean-Baptiste '15, who graduated on a Sunday and booked a role in the Broadway production of Les Miz on Monday. The anchor lead-in to the report on Channel 3 compared the success of recent grads to "graduating law school and heading right to the Supreme Court."

Bussert is also highlighted in the Huffington Post, the subject of a profile by "The Audition Coach," Mary Anna Dennard.  In "Women in the Performing Arts: Vicky Bussert," the director of BW's music theatre program, who is also a working music theatre director, was asked to describe her "professional bliss." 

"I have always believed in the principle of training our students in order to be able to hire them," she tells Dennard. "My professional bliss is witnessing the light-bulb moment, when the student 'gets it,' and begins to thrive professionally and personally alongside seasoned performers in union productions I direct."

Bussert also cited BW's "proven New York track record: 18 showcases, and for the past six years, every graduating student has signed with an agent. For 15 years we have had a continuous presence on Broadway with six grads currently appearing in shows." 

And Jean-Baptiste will make seven!

StudentAdvisor Features BW Advice on Study Abroad Apps

When StudentAdvisor wanted to know how students studying around the world could make use of a smart phone even without a cellular signal, Baldwin Wallace University study broad specialist Kristen Catrina stepped in as an expert resource. In a guest column, titled 10 Useful OFFLINE Apps for Study Abroad Students, Catrina compiles a list of 10 very useful apps that will work without an expensive global cell phone plan.

Catrina's list includes the free, electronic guidebook, Triposo, plus language and food allergy translators, currency converters and more. Check out the complete list at studentadvisor.com and, as always, check out BW Study Abroad/Explorations on the web for even more resources!

Monday, May 18, 2015

US Open Media Center to be Named After Legendary BW Alum

The U.S. Open Media Center at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center will be named in honor of BW alumnus Bud Collins '51. The recognition received unanimous support from the USTA Board of Directors, staff and other members of the international tennis media.

A legendary tennis broadcaster, Collins got his start writing for the Boston Herald and later the Boston Globe before going on to do tennis commentary for major broadcast news networks such as NBC and ESPN. He has also written several books including Bud Collins' Encyclopedia of Tennis and The Education of a Tennis Player.

Collins has served on the Board of Directors of the International Tennis Hall of Fame and as President of the US Tennis Writing Association. He was inducted into the BW Alumni Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 1984.

In announcing the honor, USTA President, Katrina Adams wrote to Collins, '"Your long-time passion for, and commitment to, the sport of tennis is inspiring, and your work has contributed greatly to the growth of the sport-not only in the U.S. but around the world."  The dedication of the US Open Media Center is a special tribute that reflects the outstanding career and lasting legacy that Collins has left on the tennis community.

The news was even welcomed by Billie Jean King herself, who tweeted, "I'm so happy to learn the media center at the #USTA National Tennis Center will be named for legendary journalist Bud Collins."

Friday, May 15, 2015

Men's Chorus Performs National Anthem for Indians

The BW Men's Chorus knocked it out of the park at Progressive Field on Saturday May 9. Under the direction of Frank Bianchi, the Men's Chorus performed the Star-Spangled Banner to kick off the Cleveland Indians game against the Minnesota Twins.

The performance serves as a fundraiser for the Men's Chorus. By selling tickets to friends, family and colleagues prior to the game, the fundraiser generated about $3,000 for the group. This was the fifth year that the Men's Chorus sang at the Indians game and they are planning to sing again next year.

BW Men's Chorus is made up of men who are college-age and up and includes BW students, faculty, staff and alumni, as well as residents from the Greater Cleveland area. The group has performed in front of a wide variety of audiences throughout Northeast Ohio and has collaborated with many different outstanding music organizations. Visit the  Men's Chorus Facebook page to see a video of their performance of the National Anthem, and follow them for information on upcoming events and other news.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Students “Leave it Behind” to Help People in Need

"Leave It Behind" co-chairs Ashley Porach ’17 (l) and Gwyn Dubel '18 (r)
As thousands of college students move out of residence halls each spring, they often toss usable items in the dumpster. At BW, students are encouraged to “Leave it Behind” to benefit the community. BW’s Office of Community Outreach (OCO) runs the annual “Leave it Behind” drive that combines sustainability with service.

“We hope to show students that used items are very important to others, and that helps us to appreciate all the things that we have,” said project co-chair Ashley Porach ’17, an industrial/organizational psychology major from Berea, Ohio. 

Donations of unopened non-perishable food items, gently used clothes, and other items collected in residence hall donation boxes will benefit Goodwill and Berea Welfare Assistance. The drive, which was featured in news stories on WKYC-TV Channel 3 and on cleveland.com/SUN News  usually fills half of a large box truck with donations.

Co-chair Gwyn Dubel ’18, a Greenville, Penn. native, said the effort provides “an accessible and easy way for students to give back to the local community.” The human resource management major, who served on OCO’s student leadership team this past year added, “It's small actions and simple donations to community partners that help make differences in people's lives.” 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Physics Major Recognized at Women of Achievement Awards

Kaylee Yuhas ’16, an impressive BW physics scholar is the winner of the Dr. Jennie S. Hwang Award presented at the YWCA Cleveland’s prestigious Annual Women of Achievement awards luncheon and conference. Yuhas, who carries a perfect 4.0 GPA within her major (and 3.964 overall), is the third BW STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) major in row from BW to win the award.

At BW, Yuhas has been recognized as “Outstanding Physics Student of the Year,” is a member of the mathematics honor society, Kappa Mu Epsilon, and presented her original scholarly work on starspots at the American Astronomical Society’s 225th Annual Meeting. While adding a math minor to her academic rigor, Yuhas also serves as President of the Baldwin Wallace Problem Solving Club, and volunteers with the Richfield Kiwanis Club.

Outside the classroom, Yuhas, who aspires to earn a Ph.D in astrophysics or software engineering, has developed rich YouTube content to share complex scientific concepts in an accessible and entertaining way. She hosts instructional videos on her own channel, Explorium, and now serves as head writer at Life Noggin, an animated educational YouTube channel for people who are “positively obsessed with learning new things.” Life Noggin has more than 50,000 subscribers.

"As a physics major, I understand the beauty and importance of math and science, and was inspired to share that knowledge with others," Yuhas says of her video outreach. "My goal is to make the STEM field more approachable to both scientists and non-scientists alike, and pique my viewers' curiosities."

Icing on the cake? The Brecksville native authored two books while still in high school. Oh, and she's juggled 5 part time jobs to help pay for her education.

The $1,500 Dr. Jennie S. Hwang Award scholarship was created through the generosity of Dr. Hwang, a scientist, engineer, corporate executive, international businesswoman, worldwide speaker, prolific author, corporate director, university trustee and community leader.
Dr. Jim McCargar, associate dean of BW's School of Mathematics, NaturalSciences & Computing
celebrates Kaylee's scholarship award at the AprilYWCA Women of Achievement luncheon.
Astronomy professor Dr. Gary Kader also attended.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Alum Nominated by President Obama to Lead TSA

Photo Courtesy of Cleveland.com
Coast Guard Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger '77 has been nominated by President Obama to lead the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). "He has been a recognized leader in the face of our nation's important challenges and I am grateful for his service," the President said of the Lorain Country native in a White House press release.

Neffenger's appointment must be approved by the U.S. Senate. Unlike many of President Obama's past nominations, members of both political parties are commending his nomination and expressing confidence that Neffenger will provide effective and strong leadership for the TSA, within the Department of Homeland Security.

According to a Washington Post article, the post will put Neffenger in charge of security operations at over 450 U.S. airports, give him oversight of a staff of 50,000 security personnel and leadership responsibility for the Federal Air Marshal Service.

Neffenger graduated from BW with a bachelor's degree in English before going on to earn three additional master's degrees. He still gives back to BW, taking students to an international conference in 2013 and speaking to students and faculty. During his last visit in the Spring of 2014, he spoke to students about how the U.S. can contribute to helping build a peaceful world. He currently serves as the 29th Vice Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.
Coast Guard Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger '77 speaks to students in Dr. Judy Krutky's classroom,  Spring 2014

Friday, May 1, 2015

Music Theatre Grad Wins Daytime Emmy

Sainty Nelsen '11 with her Daytime Emmy
With a degree from BW's esteemed Music Theatre program, plus film and television acting credits under her belt, Sainty (Reid)  Nelsen '11 has taken a new role in the entertainment industry as a producer for the online exclusive soap opera, The Bay.

It should come as no surprise that the latest role for this BW alumna paid off at this year's Daytime Emmys, with Nelsen taking home an Emmy for her work producing the series.

Currently shown on Blip, The Bay illuminates the darkness behind the glamorous lifestyles of Los Angeles' elite residents. The series came out on top in the Emmy category, "Outstanding New Approaches Drama Series."

In front of the camera, Nelsen will shine on television alongside Denis Leary and John Corbett in FX's new comedy Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll this summer.