June 21, 2021
News for and about the Illinois Wesleyan community
Published biweekly during the summer
Campus News
Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts Michelle Gibbs was selected to participate in the National Endowment for Humanities Summer Institute focused on the works of Zora Neale Hurston, who portrayed racial struggles in the early-1900s American South.
Physics major Valeria Viteri-Pflucker ’22 has been awarded a 2021 Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, for her potential contributions to the field.
After earning a coveted spot in the Music International Grand Prix Solo Competition finals, music education major Lindsay Ring ’21 went on to win first place in the competition’s Young Adult Winds and Brass category.
Titan Athletics
Men's soccer seniors Keagan James, Mateo Grajales, and Bobby Reichert were among the 2020-21 College Player Award of Distinction recipients announced by the United Soccer Coaches. The award honors deserving players who perform not only on the field but are also team leaders, embody sportsmanship and respect for all, and contribute to the community.
Titans In The News
The Sanford (N.C.) Herald
Jacklynn (Wilson) Lesniak ’86 was named chief nursing officer for FirstHealth of the Carolinas. More coverage from Becker’s Hospital Review.
Cherokee One Feather
Shana (Bushyhead) Condill '99 was appointed executive director of the Museum of the Cherokee Indian in Cherokee, North Carolina.
Actress Kira Rangel '20 was featured in a weekly Artists in Conversation column, discussing her career and how she managed the pandemic.
(Greensboro, N.C.) Triad Business Journal
Dr. Beth Mulberry ’86 was featured in the journal’s “Outstanding Women in Business” series.
(Waterloo, Ill.) Republic-Times
Kristian Avise-Rouse ’20 was named music director at Columbia High School in Columbia, Illinois.
The Pantagraph
Retired IWU librarian Karen Schmidt discussed the return of Normal's little library with a warning in Latin supplied by Associate Professor of History Amy Coles.
The Pantagraph
The former home and library of IWU professor, dean and vice president Wilbert Ferguson — known on campus as the “Grand Old Man” during his 50-year tenure that began in 1894 — was part of this year’s Old House Society Tour of Homes.
Join us for the 29th Annual Titan Golf Outing on Monday, June 28 at El Paso Golf Club in El Paso, Illinois, benefiting Titan Athletics. Learn more and register.

Also, save the date for the 25th Annual Titan Alumni Golf Outing on Monday, Sept. 13 at Mistwood Golf Club in Romeoville, Illinois. Registration opens this summer.
We are looking forward to welcoming our alumni, parents, and friends back to campus for an in-person celebration this fall – it is our full intention to once again provide the traditional Homecoming experience. We will follow any COVID-19 protocols recommended at that time by state health authorities and the Centers for Disease Control to ensure the health and safety of our campus community and the greater Bloomington-Normal area.


Learn more about Homecoming, reunions, and planning your stay. Please note that Homecoming Weekend is also ISU's Family Weekend. We recommend planning your stay and booking your hotel early (hotel blocks close around August 30)!
Looking for a way to connect with fellow Titans? Join a Regional Alumni Chapter in your area! Alumni, parents, and friends alike can join these volunteer-led Chapters to find, network, and socialize with other Titans. Learn more and find a Regional Alumni Chapter near you.
  • Illinois Wesleyan's Honors Research collection in Digital Commons has an impressive global reach: this year members of 82% of countries across the world downloaded content from the collection. IWU students are contributing to scholarly conversation and creative expression across the world. Learn more in the impact report from Elsevier.

  • Ryan Domalewski '24 is among the cast in the Student-Directed Summer Fest, featuring virtual productions of four one-act plays presented by Rutgers University.

  • Mike Palackdharry ’85 was appointed executive vice president, growth and strategy, by AssureCare, a leader in population health and care management solutions.

  • Brita Sandstrom ’11 penned her debut novel Hollow Chest, a modern folktale for middle grade readers published by Walden Pond Press, an imprint of HarperCollins.
Class Newsletter Highlight
Keep up with the latest news and photos from your classmates! When you visit your Class Newsletter, you can subscribe via email by submitting your address under "subscribe to my posts." 
In recent highlights, Rachael Liesman ’06 is the Director of Microbiology at the University of Kansas Medical Center. Her work in establishing testing sites and processes for COVID has been remarkable and she has since become a frequently quoted expert in the news. In 2021 she was recognized as a Healthcare Hero by Kansas City’s Ingram’s Magazine
This newsletter is an electronic publication of Illinois Wesleyan University's Communications Office, edited by Ann Aubry, director of communications, in conjunction with the Office of Alumni Engagement.
Visit iwu.edu/alumni to stay updated on the latest alumni news, events, and engagement. 
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