At our 40th reunion in 2001, the Class approved the annual expenditure of $1,000 for each of three students. The objective was not only to use class funds to benefit students, but to allow our Classmates to gain a better perspective of what’s happening on campus, and provide the opportunity to meet and mingle with the students.
One of the $1,000 stipends is awarded to someone in Academics, and the first year’s award went to a senior thesis project in the biochemistry field. Last year, the student was from the Psychology and Neurosciences Department, and Beth Rabbitt ’04,was recommended byher Advisor, Professor Abigail Baird. Abigail Baird was our speaker at last year’s mini-reunion dinner, and had been suggested by Mike Gazzaniga.
A second $1,000 award goes to our Arts Initiative Fund student. Each year, Lewis Crickard and the Hopkins Center Staff, request applications from students for funding special projects in the visual and performing arts. During the first three years the students have had projects in 1) photography and the computer, 2) writing and illustrating a children’s book, and 3) developing low cost housing in the Hawaiian Islands, respectively. With the first two projects, the students made a presentation to members of our class attending a mini-reunion in Hanover celebrating the Performing Arts and our Class of 1961 Legacy Endowment.
With the third award, the Class donates $1,000 to the Dartmouth Athletic Sponsor program. Funds from this program are used to provide transportation and expenses for prospective student-athletes to visit the Dartmouth campus. In return for our $1,000 donation, on e of the new Dartmouth students taking advantage of this program is assigned to our Class. Over the first three years that our class has participated in the Athletic Sponsors Program, we have been assigned a pitcher on the baseball team, a midfield defenseman on the Women’s lacrosse team, and a punter/kicker on the football team.
For the 2004-05 year, the three students the Class of 1961 are sponsoring include:
Athletic Sponsors Program: Adria Buchanan. Adria is an entering first-year student, class of ’08, from Los Angeles. She is on the women’s volleyball team, and came to Dartmouth on the recommendation of her English teacher, a Dartmouth graduate, and after visiting the campus, thanks to our donation.
Academic Research Program: Jane Viner. Jane is a senior in the Psychology and Neurosciences Department, and,like Beth Rabbitt, has Professor Abigail Baird as her advisor. She will be conducting research involving adolescent girls, attempting to detect patterns connecting social behaviors with brain functions.
Arts Initiative Student: Zeke McMullen. Zeke (full name Christopher McMullen-Laird) is in his senior year and has been awarded a senior fellowship. A music major, Zeke’s project includes a concert and lecture series, including recruiting and performing a major Mozart opera next spring.
All three of this year’s students, plus Beth Rabbit from last year, met with our classmates and spouses over Hanover mini-reunion on October 8-10. Changing the format of our Saturday mornings from prior years, we met in a classroom in the Moore Building at 10:00, and had two glorious hours of listening to these fantastic students talk about their projects, their sport, their aspirations, and achievements. Everyone in attendance came away with the greatest respect and admiration for these skilled and talented Dartmouth students (and one alum).
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