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Many students, faculty and staff didn’t experience many “lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer,” as Titans pursued their passions both here in Bloomington and far beyond the gates of campus. Whether through internships, cultural exchanges, independent research or campus jobs, students will have much to report to friends and faculty when they begin classes later in August. 

Take a look at our summer.

President Jensen's Backyard Jam Session

President Eric Jensen invited faculty, staff and other music lovers to a July after-work jam session in the backyard of the President’s House. Guitarist and Assistant Manager of Maintenance Services Steve Ogan (standing) plays with Custodian Scott Campbell (foreground) and local financial advisor and musician Jack Secord (far right). (Photo by Robert Frank III ‘14)


Professor of Music Vadim Mazo serenades students on his 200-year-old violin

During a scavenger hunt designed to introduce SPLICE students to campus programs and personalities, Associate Professor of Music Vadim Mazo serenades students on his 200-year-old violin. “This campus takes fine arts and liberal arts seriously,” Mazo told the students, who spent a week in June sampling chemistry and biology courses and lab sessions. SPLICE (Science Program for Leadership, Inquiry, and Campus Engagement) connects incoming first-year science students to professors and peers. (Photo by Kim Hill)


Tana Smithsakol ’17 works on a new method of staining starfish larvae

As part of Associate Professor of Biology Will Jaeckle’s lab group, Tana Smithsakol ’17 works on a new method of staining starfish larvae. “I’m doing everything by myself,” Smithsakol said of his independent lab research, “so there is no ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer.” A biology major, Smithsakol plans to apply to medical school after graduation. (Photo by Kim Hill)


sportscaster Howard Cosell and heavyweight champ Muhammad Ali

Memorabilia from Hall of Fame sportswriter Dave Kindred’s 50 years of sportswriting, including this photo of sportscaster Howard Cosell and heavyweight champ Muhammad Ali, now reside in the Tate Archives and Special Collections. A 1963 graduate of Illinois Wesleyan, Kindred tweeted that he was happy Illinois Wesleyan “was now home to most everything I’ve scribbled and typed” over a career that saw Kindred covering every major sporting event in America. Kindred first began writing about Ali 50 years ago when Kindred was a young sports reporter in Louisville, Ky., Ali’s hometown. Kindred believes he’s written more about Ali than anyone else over that time span. 


Alex Hill ’13 served as an assistant in the girls’ volleyball camp

More than 400 local youth participated in lacrosse, soccer and volleyball camps during one week in early June. For the second straight year, former Titan volleyball standout Alex Hill ’13 served as an assistant in the girls’ volleyball camp. “As a player, I didn’t consider becoming a coach or teaching,” said Hill, who majored in business. “It’s so fun to be back at IWU doing something I absolutely love.” Hill will enter graduate school this fall to pursue a master’s degree in education with plans to teach and continue coaching. (Photo by Kim Hill)


Laurel Turner ’18 captured this photo of the Ueno district of Tokyo during her two-week stay in Japan

Laurel Turner ’18 captured this photo of the Ueno district of Tokyo during her two-week stay in Japan. “I thought this showed Tokyo as the vibrant, busy place it is, and how even a small part of Tokyo is bursting at the seams with culture.” Along with Professor Scott Sheridan and students Lisa Cheng ’19 and Payton Letko ’19, Turner attended Technos International Week, which promotes international understanding, appreciation and peace. “Visiting Japan gave me a chance to see and apply my liberal arts studies, especially anthropology and international studies, in a real-life setting. Firsthand experience helped me to understand the complexity and diversity found within separate cultures, and showed me the bridges and barriers that can impact intercultural communication,” she said. Since 1992, grants from The Tanaka Memorial Foundation have funded a total of 72 students to travel to Japan to attend Technos International Week. 


Meaghan Mormann ’16 assists Assistant Professor of Nursing Noël Kerr in immobilizing a boy’s broken arm at the brigade’s medical clinic

During her fourth Global Brigade to Honduras in as many years, Meaghan Mormann ’16 (left) assists Assistant Professor of Nursing Noël Kerr in immobilizing a boy’s broken arm at the brigade’s medical clinic. The students in IWU’s Global Brigades chapter pay their own costs to attend (about $1,500 each) and must also collect or raise the money for most of the supplies and medications they need for their brigade. Mormann said the opportunity to volunteer with a brigade in Honduras “is one of the most precious gifts I’ve ever received.” 


Piotr Barnas ’17 samples rice to run a polymerase chain reaction study

At his internship at the International Rice Research Institute in Los Baños, Philippines, biology major Piotr Barnas ’17 samples rice to run a polymerase chain reaction study. Barnas was one of 26 IWU students interning in Asia this summer, thanks to a $400,000 grant from the Freeman Foundation that covered students' airfare, housing, and all internship placement and visa costs.


Ambassador Yolanda Juarez ’17 (far right) leads a tour of prospective students and their families

IWU Preview Day brought hundreds of visitors to campus. Ambassador Yolanda Juarez ’17 (far right) leads a tour of prospective students and their families. (Photo by Kim Hill)


Tim Leiser ’16 attended the Google Summer Scholar’s Retreat at the Googleplex in Mountain View, CA

A U.S. Army veteran, Tim Leiser '16 was one of only eight students nationwide selected for a Google SVA scholarship, sponsored by Google and Student Veterans of America. The honor included an invitation to the Google Summer Scholar's Retreat at the Googleplex in Mountain View, CA. "During our week we met over 150 Google Ph.D.s who study everything from machine learning to artificial intelligence. We even got to work with a mentor to assist us with our own projects -- by the far the most amazing thing we did." 


Eckley Scholar Marth Aguirre '17 duscusses her progres in comparing ways students and teachers in two different countries are resisting the privatization of public education

Eckley Scholar Martha Aguirre '17 discusses her research progress with Chair of Educational Studies Irv Epstein. Aguirre is comparing ways students and teachers in two different countries are resisting the privatization of public education. She is one of five students spending their summers conducting research under the mentorship of a faculty member. Established in 2012, the Robert S. and Nell B. Eckley Scholars and Artists Program provides a stipend of $4,000 for each student scholar. Epstein is also the Ben and Susan Rhodes Endowed Professor in Peace and Social Justice. (Photo by Kim Hill) 


Lupe Hernandez ’18 organized a campaign where staff, students and faculty could write personal letters

As part of her Summer Enrichment Program (SEP) internship at the Action Research Center, Lupe Hernandez ’18 organized a campaign where staff, students and faculty could write personal letters to the 57 members of the Class of 2020 who are the first in their families to go to college. A program for current MALANA and international students, SEP participants have a paid internship, learn from formal training workshops and work on a summer-long service project in the Bloomington-Normal community. Speaking about her internship, "we want to make every first generation college student feel welcomed and valued here at IWU," said Hernandez, who is also a first-generation college student. (Photo by Kim Hill)


LeeAnna Studt ’17 applies stage makeup to a participant during the Young Artists in Theatre camp

Music theatre major LeeAnna Studt ’17 applies stage makeup to a participant during the Young Artists in Theatre camp. As assistant director of the camp for fifth through eighth graders, Studt handled choreography and costume design for a special youth adaptation of The Aristocats. This year marked the second year for the camp.


The men's basketball team, Coach Ron Rose, and President Eric Jensen begin their shifts as volunteer callers during the St. Jude Telethon

The men's basketball team, Coach Ron Rose, and President Eric Jensen begin their shifts as volunteer callers during the St. Jude Telethon July 30. The team also played some hoops with local families who attended the telethon, broadcast from the Shirk Center. (Photo by Stew Salowitz) 


Hedding Bell by Robert Frank III '14

In composing this image of the Hedding Bell, University Web Designer Robert Frank III included a corner of the bell’s stone foundation. “The stone is just as important as the bell itself,” said Frank, an art major. “It hints at humble but strong beginnings.” To Frank, the mid-morning light illuminating the side of the bell symbolizes IWU’s recent history while the shadows on the left symbolize the much longer and, in some cases, possibly forgotten past. The bell rang at Hedding College from 1850 to 1928, when IWU absorbed Hedding College. (Photo by Robert Frank III ‘14)