Arts: Alumnus drums on Broadway

Oprah and Garnett

Oprah and Garnett

Music alumnus Alvester Garnett (B.M.’93/A) recently wrapped up “After Midnight,” a Broadway show in which he was the drummer. During the show’s run, Garnett kept some well-known company. Here is what he had to say:

“If I had a genie in a bottle, one of my three wishes would be able to go back and see Duke Ellington perform at the Cotton Club with master drummer Sonny Greer and all the members of his wonderful band along with all the amazing dancers and singers that were a part of the beautiful tradition of Jazz walking hand-in-hand with dance.

Whoopi Goldberg and Garnett

Whoopi Goldberg and Garnett

Between Oct. 21, 2013, and June 29, 2014, I came as about as close to that dream as I think possible while working with some of the most phenomenal musicians, dancers, singers, dressers, stage hands, costumers, ushers, janitors, doormen, soundmen, lighting crew and etc. In the course of this amazing production, I was reminded of the massive amount of teamwork it takes to do something like this and I have to say these were some of the greatest people I could ever dream of with which to work. Everyone’s attitudes were so positive and everyone was immensely dedicated to their art and craft. Each show was another experience of bliss for me and primarily because I love these folks.”

Congrats, Alvester!

Business: Alumnus to serve on Washington College board

Harvey

Harvey

Washington College has announced the appointment of DuPont executive William J. Harvey (B.S.’72/B) to serve on its board of visitors and governors.

Harvey, president of DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers in Wilmington, Delaware, joined DuPont in 1977 as a product specialist in the former Polymers Department. He rose through a series of assignments in product-management and product-development, eventually becoming business manager for DuPont Elastomers (Neoprene, Nordel® and Hypalon®) in 1990. He left DuPont for four years to work as general manager of the Peroxygen Chemical Division of FMC Corporation in Philadelphia. After returning to DuPont in 1996, he would hold another series of positions, including Vice President of DuPont Advanced Fibers, DuPont Corporate Operations and DuPont Corporate Strategy, before assuming his current position in 2009.

A native of Portsmouth, Virginia, Harvey earned a bachelor of science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and an M.B.A. from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. In addition, he has completed several executive management programs at the Harvard Business School. He is on the Board of Directors of Kennametal, Inc., and is a former trustee of the Darden School of Business, Delaware State University and St. Catherine’s School in Richmond, Virginia.

Arts: Cinema alumni nab honorable mention

artsalumniLooking for a way to exercise their “creative muscles,” Miles Coulton-Thompson and Daniel Ardura (B.A.’13/A) entered last month’s 48 Hour Film Project. The two Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts alumni recently launched a film production company in Richmond called Idol Hand Productionsand thought the competition would be a good way to promote their venture.

Not only did they showcase their creative talent, they also earned an Honorable Mention for their film “Crypt Crawlers.”

Read more. 

Allied Health: Janet Harvey Trivette Scholarship awarded

Parsons

Parsons

On behalf of the Janet Harvey Trivette Scholarship Committee, Jody L. Chin, Lang Liebman, Taryn G. Torre, George A. Trivette, Timothy J. Wallace and Jo Anne D. Walker, congratulations to Hannah Parsons for being the recipient of this year’s scholarship.

The members of the scholarship committee reviewed each application individually and provided scores for the essay as well as an overall recommendation based on all scholarship parameters. The applications were blinded and a standard rubric was used to evaluate the essay to maintain consistency among committee members.

The scholarship will fund Hannah’s tuition, fees and books for both senior semesters, based on in-state tuition costs. Please join me in congratulation Hannah as she is most deserving of this scholarship signifying clinical excelled in Radiation Therapy.

The Department of Radiation Sciences will present Ms. Parsons with the award at the VCU Gamma Chi (Radiologic and Imaging Sciences Honor Society) fall meeting.

Sincerely,

Melanie Dempsey, M.C., RTT, CMD
VCU Radiation Therapy Program Director

Nursing: Consider a Ph.D. online at your alma mater

Thinking about going back to school to pursue a Ph.D.? The VCU School of Nursing online program might be just what you need so you can work while earning your doctorate. The program offers a convenient hybrid format Ph.D. that combines online classes with minimal on-site requirements.

Learn more about the program on our website or contact Fonda Neal in the Office of Academic Programs at fneal@vcu.edu or 804-828-0836. 

H&S: Reeves wins Levis Reading Prize for ‘King Me’

Roger Reeves

Roger Reeves

Roger Reeves has been named the winner of the 2014 Levis Reading Prize, which is awarded by Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of English and its M.F.A. in Creative Writing program, for his poetry collection “King Me.”

The prize is awarded annually in the name of the late Larry Levis for the best first or second book of poetry published in the previous calendar year. Reeves will receive an award of $2,000 and will read from his prize-winning work on Oct. 9 at 8 p.m. at the Grace Street Theater, 934 W Grace St., followed by a reception.

Poems by Roger Reeves have appeared in Best American Poetry, Poetry, Ploughshares, American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Tin House and the 2014 edition of The Pushcart Prize. Copper Canyon Press published “King Me,” Reeves’ first book of poems, in 2013. He has been awarded a 2014-15 Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, a 2013 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship and a 2008 Ruth Lilly Fellowship. Reeves is an assistant professor in the Department of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Read more. 

Medicine: Geriatrics course developed at VCU to be licensed to other universities

Peter Boling

Peter Boling

With a reputation for one of the most advanced programs in web-based geriatric education, the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine’s latest course offering is now being licensed to other universities across the nation.

The innovative system for interactive Web-based interprofessional education was first designed in 2010. By the end of the 2015 academic year, more than 1,500 senior students from VCU’s Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy and Social Work will have trained in this semester-long program.

Working in interdisciplinary teams of eight, the students are assigned a fictional scenario of a complex geriatric case, with each student receiving only the information typically available to that student’s discipline. They must use an electronic record simulator to share information, and they determine the best course of care on a discussion board, which helps the team answer 65 challenging multiple-answer questions that reflect real-world situations.

“In an actual health care environment, physicians, nurses, social workers and pharmacists have different perspectives on any given patient,” said Peter A. Boling, M.D., professor of internal medicine and chair of the Division of Geriatric Medicine. “Interprofessional training is becoming a national priority because health care, especially for complex cases, requires an interactive team of professionals from multiple disciplines. The LCME [Liaison Committee on Medical Education] has made it a specific item upon which medical schools are now surveyed.”

Read more.

Q&A with author of ‘The Circle’

Dave Eggers

Dave Eggers

Dave Eggers has been a literary celebrity since his bold debut book, the memoir “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius,” was published in 2000 to widespread critical admiration. In the years since, Eggers has written eight books, including five novels, and co-written two screenplays made into feature films (“Away We Go” and “Where the Wild Things Are”). In addition, he founded McSweeney’s, an influential independent publishing house, and co-founded 826 National, a nonprofit network of eight writing and tutoring centers.

“The Circle,” Eggers’ latest novel, is a provocative thriller about a massive technology corporation called the Circle, which has become the world’s most powerful company while promoting apparently benevolent messages of transparency and sharing. The last vestiges of personal privacy are rapidly being swallowed into the digital realm as the Circle’s technological breakthroughs prove too appealing and sweeping for consumers to turn down.

Mae Holland, the novel’s protagonist, starts her employment at the Circle as a fairly average user of the Internet and social media. In the novel’s opening sentences, she arrives on her first day of work and is immediately besotted with the company’s remarkable campus: “My God, Mae thought. It’s heaven.”

Read more.