(Posted March 30, 2012 )
It has been a bittersweet start to spring at BGSU.
The University community came together to mourn and celebrate the lives of three members of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority. Rebekah Blakkolb, Christina Goyett, and Sarah Hammond died in a tragic car accident at the start of Spring Break. Two other members of the sorority, Angelica Mormile and Kayla Somoles, are in our thoughts as they recover from serious injuries sustained in the accident. It’s hard to comprehend the loss of such young lives, and we feel deeply for their families and friends. A scholarship has been established to honor the women.
I wanted to let you know that Tom Hiles, vice president for advancement and president of the BGSU Foundation, will be leaving the University to accept a position as vice chancellor for development and alumni relations at the University of Missouri. I’ve enjoyed working with Tom and appreciate his leadership. We’ll be conducting a national search to permanently fill this position. I’ll keep you updated as that process progresses.
This month we celebrated the continued success of our Falcon Forensics and Debate Team, unquestionably one of the top teams in the country. They won this year’s National Comprehensive Team Championship trophy at a competition in Kansas City, Missouri. Our Falcons placed as a team in all six team divisions at the tournament.
We were thrilled to host the first and second rounds of the Women’s NCAA Tournament at the Stroh Center. It was a big success with more than 4,000 people in the stands for both days of the tournament. Our attendance – 95 percent of capacity – was the second highest of all of the 16 first and second round sites across the country. We hope to serve as a tournament site again, and next time with our Falcons on the court!
Earlier this week, we announced that Curt Miller, the outstanding head coach of our women’s basketball team, is leaving the University to become head coach of the women’s program at Indiana University. He’ll be greatly missed, but we wish him well as embarks on this new challenge.
BGSU hockey shocked the hockey world as the No. 11 seed for the CCHA Tournament by beating Northern Michigan in three games in the first round and then beating No. 2 ranked Ferris State in three games in the second round. The Falcons headed to Joe Louis Arena for the CCHA semifinals and came up just a bit short in a 3-2 double overtime loss to Michigan.
Did you catch alumnus Alex Wright ’06 on Jeopardy? Alex, a former Freddie Falcon, won $27,000 and gave BGSU a “shout out” on the game show.
I’ve enjoyed meeting many of you at alumni events across the country. Next up are visits in Chicago, Denver, Indianapolis, Charlotte and Atlanta. There is a complete schedule available here; I hope you stop by if I’m in your city.
I’m looking forward to reading “The Garden of the World,” a new work of historical fiction by Dr. Lawrence Coates, director of the BGSU Creative Writing Program. The novel, which received a positive review in Publisher's Weekly, follows the fortunes of a family of vintners in California’s Santa Clara Valley in the early part of the century.
I would love to hear what you’re reading! Please share your thoughts on a good read on my Facebook page.
Mary Ellen Mazey, Ph.D.