2018 Stories

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‘A remarkable year’: 50th anniversary commemoration culminates with Legacy Weekend

Throughout the 2017-2018 academic year, W&M has been commemorating that history, marking the 50th anniversary of Ely, Strafer and Briley’s arrival at W&M with a series of special events, projects, performances, lectures and other programming. The “Building the Legacy” commemoration culminated on April 12-14 with Legacy Weekend, which included a performance by storyteller Onawumi Jean Moss, a black opera gala, an African-American history walking tour (watch video), a panel session with the Legacy 3 and an alumni awards dinner with journalist Charlayne Hunter-Gault as the keynote speaker.

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All in the Family

"My life without William & Mary? It's like asking what you would do without your right arm!" said Sherri Sell Phillips ’83, P ’14, P ’16. She is one of eight members of her family, spanning three generations, who are William & Mary alumni. Just as the Tribe has been an integral part of their lives, they are an integral part of the Tribe.

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Volunteer Week 2018

National Volunteer Week is April 15-21. The purpose of this week is to celebrate volunteers and promote volunteerism. Alumni and parent volunteers touch every aspect of William & Mary and fill crucial roles across the university by serving students, in classrooms, in the workplace or with fellow alumni/parents worldwide. Christopher Miller ’08 shares his experience and perspective on being a volunteer this week on The Gale.

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William & Mary breaks all One Tribe One Day records with 12,770 donors

William & Mary celebrated the fifth annual One Tribe One Day on April 10 and surpassed all previous records made on the university's single biggest day of giving. An impressive 12,770 donors made a gift last Tuesday, marking a nearly 570 percent increase in the number of donors who gave compared to its first giving day in 2014 when 1,906 individuals gave back.

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Couple gives $1 million scholarships gift to encourage the great legal minds of tomorrow

When Jim Penney J.D. ’83 attended William & Mary Law School, he needed to take out loans to pay for his degree and to make ends meet. Thirty-five years later, Penney and his wife LauraLeigh Young have chosen to help reduce the financial burden for future William & Mary law students with a $1 million gift toward scholarships, the top priority of the university’s For the Bold campaign.

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One Tribe One Day 2018

The fifth annual One Tribe One Day (OTOD) drew hundreds of students, faculty and staff to the Sunken Garden yesterday to celebrate William & Mary’s biggest day of giving back and paying it forward. The popular campus carnival offered a wide range of activities, including a petting zoo, inflatables and a snow cone truck. For the first time OTOD featured a zipline, which was a major hit, as evidenced by the long line throughout the afternoon and the exclamations of students as they sailed across the Sunken Garden. But the powerful meaning of OTOD wasn’t lost amidst the fun. Read what OTOD attendees had to say about why they gave and the importance of the day.

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W&M alumna becomes first woman to direct National Air and Space Museum

Ellen Stofan ’83, D.Sc. ’16 has been named director of the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. The appointment will be effective April 30. A Smithsonian press release noted that Stofan will be the first woman to hold this position.

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New Wren plaques to honor African-American, women students

The Wren Building will soon bear two new plaques honoring William & Mary’s first women and African-American residential students. The plaques will be unveiled during a public ceremony at noon on April 19. Attendees are asked to register in advance.

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Q&A with Ashley Pinney '08

This month we spoke with Ashley Pinney '08 and she shares her fondest memories from W&M and describes her relationship with the Tribe.

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A Decade of Leadership: Reflections on W&M's 27th president

In the coming months, The Gale will feature a series of blog posts from distinguished alumni and friends reflecting on Taylor Reveley's leadership over the past decade. This week, William & Mary Law School Vice Dean Patricia Roberts J.D. '92, offers her own reflection on Taylor's legacy as William & Mary's 27th president.

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William & Mary Celebrates For the Bold in Richmond

Greater Richmond was ignited with Tribe Pride last night as the William & Mary community gathered together at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts to celebrate For the Bold.

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50th panel discussion examines learning from the past

Dr. James Patton opened the discussion with a word and a gift. The word was Sankofa, from the Twilanguage in Ghana, meaning "Go back and fetch it,” or in other words, know where you come from in order to move ahead. His gift symbolized the word: a wooden statue of a bird, moving forward while looking back.  Patton gave the statue to Dean Spencer Niles of the School of Education, to keep in a display case as a reminder of the event that night: “Learning from the Past to Shape the Future,” a panel of esteemed African-American alumni from William & Mary.

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Shopping around

The first time you chat with Martha McGlothlin ’89, J.D. ’95, you forget that you’ve only just met. She instantly sweeps you into the rhythms of her life, where she juggles the schedules of four children, serves on the board of The United Company Charitable Foundation and owns a small business. You wish that you could set up a lunch next week to listen to more stories over Cheese Shop sandwiches smothered in their signature House Dressing.

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All Aboard! Society of 1918 Celebrates First Event

"It's an incredible time to be, to become, a William & Mary woman," said President-Elect Katherine Rowe in a surprise visit to the first official event of the Society of 1918, William & Mary's new giving society that supports women's initiatives. "The sisterhood is incredibly powerful. We are creating changemakers."

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Another day at the breach

Your computer goes down. Then the one on the desk next to you. Then another. The phone on your desk doesn't even have a dial tone. Your cellphone beeps. It's your company's emergency alert system. This happens every day worldwide, as cybercriminals, nation-states and even company insiders wreak havoc on cyber systems. The extent of these threats and how to handle them was the focus of "Another Day at the Breach — Cyber Intrusion: A Conference of Experts," March 16-17, 2018, at William & Mary's schools of business and law.

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Natural and computational sciences escape island in annual Raft Debate

Students, faculty and community members gathered on March 15 to witness the ultimate battle of wits: Three professors, representing their individual disciplines, found themselves stranded on a remote island after an imaginary shipwreck. With only a small escape raft to support one professor’s escape, each competitor had to convince a cheering audience why their discipline merited the surviving slot on the raft.

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More events honor 50 years of black students at W&M

The 2017-2018 academic year marks the 50th anniversary of the first African-American residential students admitted to William & Mary. In 1967, Lynn Briley, Janet Brown Strafer and Karen Ely arrived at William & Mary. The university honors them and William & Mary’s entire African-American community, past and present, this year through “Building on the Legacy,” a series of special events, guest speakers and performances. All events are free and open to the public, unless otherwise noted.

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Spring Impact Week

Students for University Advancement (SUA) is gearing up for spring Impact Week, (March 12 – 16).

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Q&A with Yohance Whitaker ’16

This month we spoke with Class of 2016 President, Yohance Whitaker, to hear about his favorite William & Mary memories and what he's been up to since graduation.

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From Rink to Screen: The Premiere Gala of “The World of Ice Dance International”

Figure skaters may have glided off the ice in South Korea for the final time this year, but more opportunities exist to watch these artists dance through the frozen rink — blades swishing, sequins sparkling and smiles flashing. On March 8, Ice Dance International (IDI) will host the premiere gala screening of “The World of Ice Dance International” at the American-Scandinavian Foundation, located on New York City’s Park Avenue.

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For the Win: A Q&A with Paul Rowley '17, J.D. '20

With basketball season in full swing, player Paul Rowley shared his unique experience with William & Mary as a Class of 2017 alum, current Marshall-Wythe law student, and active athlete.

Tribe Book Roundup

William & Mary alumni and faculty are constantly creating new and exciting content. Here is The Gale's quarterly roundup of recently published books that are authored or co-authored by a member of the W&M community.

A Decade of Leadership: Reflections on W&M's 27th president

Over the next six months, The Gale will feature a series of blog posts from distinguished alumni and friends reflecting on Taylor Reveley's leadership over the past decade. This week, Michael Powell '85, D.P.S. '02, offers his own reflection on Taylor's legacy as William & Mary's 27th president.

William & Mary announces Katherine Rowe as 28th president

William & Mary's Board of Visitors today unanimously elected Katherine A. Rowe, currently provost of Smith College and a leader in digital innovation of the liberal arts, as the 28th president of the university.

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William & Mary announces Katherine Rowe as 28th President

William & Mary’s Board of Visitors today unanimously elected Katherine A. Rowe, currently provost of Smith College and a leader in digital innovation of the liberal arts, as the 28th president of the university.

W&M's annual Raft Debate to be held March 15

The Raft Debate, a much beloved William & Mary tradition, will be held at the Sadler Center's Commonwealth Auditorium on March 15 at 6:30 p.m.

Tribe love stories

In celebration of Valentine's Day, we asked our alumni to share their stories of romance at William & Mary on Facebook and Twitter. Some alumni shared the moment they realized they had found their soul mate. Others told us about a new love blooming against the backdrop of the picturesque Sunken Garden. There is even a story of a wedding proposal on the legendary Crim Dell Bridge by a knight in shining armor accompanied by a white horse. Read our Tribe love stories below.

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Celebrating Charter Day, Tradition and For the Bold

This past week, thousands of students, faculty, alumni, parents and friends gathered together to celebrate William & Mary’s 325th birthday. From the Charter Day festivities and Gold Rush basketball game (Go Tribe!) to the Alumni Medallion ceremony and so much more, we honored W&M traditions that bind our family together and hold a special place in our hearts.

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Affording Opportunity: A story of survival and the power of scholarships

When violence spilled into their hometown in Chihuahua, Mexico, Evan King '17 and his mom knew they had to leave. All along the Texas-Mexico border, gang and drug-related violence had steadily increased since 2006. King's mother worked three jobs to pay her children's school fees and to keep food on the table, and a brief move to another town provided neither safety nor better work.

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Research is a team effort

Honors Fellowships are administered by the Roy R. Charles Center for Academic Excellence, which supports faculty development, student research and engaged learning, honors and interdisciplinary studies. The center's director, Wiengartner Professor of Government Joel Schwartz, is stepping down at the end of this semester after 30 years at the helm.

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A New Society Formed for W&M Women, by W&M Women

Named in honor of the year William & Mary first admitted female students, the Society of 1918 aims to grow women's engagement, leadership and philanthropy and celebrate and honor William & Mary women. Members who join by June 30, 2018 are charter members of the society.

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Young Alumni Leading the Charge

A robust and enthusiastic alumni population has existed at William & Mary for generations, and its members have served as outstanding stewards of the university. Against a backdrop of nationally declining participation rates and weakened bonds between alumni and institution, William & Mary has prevailed.

Confronting a monster: "My friend Dahmer"

On Feb. 16, viewers at the William & Mary Global Film Festival will have the opportunity to experience this sensation for themselves. Milan Chakraborty '00, a producer of "My Friend Dahmer," will introduce and discuss the film.

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William & Mary breaks ground on Shenkman Jewish Center

Since last year’s announcement of the Shenkman Jewish Center, members of the William & Mary community have been waiting with eager anticipation for the project to begin. They need not wait any longer — on Wednesday, a large group gathered together to break ground on the more than 3,000 square foot center, which is slated to open in fall 2018.

Musical activism earns Gilliard '18 Monroe Prize

When Jordan Gilliard's high school choir teacher cued the group to start singing, silence followed. "No one would sing because we were so scared we wouldn't know the note," said Gilliard. "He told us, 'If everyone is waiting for someone else to sing, then nothing will happen.' And I've just incorporated that into my life. Nothing's going to happen if we're all waiting for someone else ? You don't have to be the savior, just the person who starts stuff." During her four years at William & Mary, Gilliard '18 has often been that person, building community by working to provide students of color more opportunities to have their voice heard, in both the university's music scene and beyond.

Richard Riley '08 uses shoes to address "sneaker violence"

With his fledgling company Fuggit, Richard Riley '08 is becoming a trailblazer in the competitive world of sneaker design. Riley, who makes unique slippers designed as classic basketball sneakers, is becoming sought as major brands look to creatively distance themselves from market competitors.

Library receives diary of soldier imprisoned at William & Mary during Civil War

On a cold, rainy day in May 1862, a young Union soldier, Henry Alexander Scandrett, would experience his first battle. Unfortunately it would be a losing battle. His regiment, the 70th New York, joined the attack on Confederate lines at Fort Magruder, an earthen redoubt two miles east of Williamsburg. The regiment saw heavy action; 350 men were killed or wounded. A small group of survivors, including Scandrett, were taken as prisoners of war and held at William & Mary.

W&M Women: A network of support

On Thursday, Jan. 11, approximately 40 William & Mary women gathered in a ballroom at The Main hotel in Norfolk, Va., to connect with one another and learn about William & Mary's 100-year anniversary of women students.

A Decade of Leadership: Reflections on W&M's 27th president

Over the next six months, The Gale will feature a series of blog posts from distinguished alumni and friends reflecting on Taylor Reveley's leadership over the past decade. This week, Yohance Whitaker '16, former student body president, offers his own reflection on Taylor's legacy as William & Mary's 27th president.

William & Mary Matters

William & Mary matters. It mattered at the inception of our nation, and a heavy dose of American history infuses our brick pathways and hallowed halls. William & Mary has personally mattered a great deal to me and my family for generations.

Winter Wonderland at William & Mary

Who knew that something called a "bomb cyclone" could create something so beautiful? William & Mary shares photos of the winter wonderland created by the first blizzard of 2018.

Alumni Journeys: 2017 Retrospective

Kate Donati details all of the adventures Alumni Journeys took last year, and gives a hint of the journeys to come!

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All the Past We Leave Behind: W&M Women in Computer Science

From October 4-6, about 18,000 women packed into 2.1 million square feet of the glass and steel monstrosity of the Orange County Convention Center on the outskirts of Orlando, Fla. Six of those young women traveled to the Florida Panhandle from William & Mary eager to network, job hunt and socialize with women in the computer science and big data fields. They were able to do so, thanks in large part to private support.

William & Mary Healthy Beginnings Program receives March of Dimes grant

The William & Mary Healthy Beginnings Program received a $10,000 grant from the March of Dimes as part of an effort to help incarcerated women receive vital prenatal care. Since the start of the program in 2012, more than 380 pregnant women in Virginia correctional facilities have been helped.