Archive for January, 2012

Beyond the Speech: Martin Luther King Jr. Day Challenge

January 13th, 2012

Martin Luther King speaks at Stanford University's Memorial Auditorium in 1967

Last fall, a challenge was issued to students: Come up with a service project that honors the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. beyond a one-day celebration or the “I Have a Dream” speech.

Ten service project proposals were submitted to the first “Beyond the Speech: Martin Luther King Jr. Day Challenge.” The proposals involved issues ranging from education and the environment to homelessness and political empowerment.

The challenge was organized by the Haas Center for Public Service with support from the Martin Luther King Celebration Committee and the Educational Resources Division of the Office of the Vice Provost for Student Affairs.

It was designed to encourage students and student groups to plan and implement service projects that extend the celebration and work of King “beyond one day of service, beyond one day of honor and beyond one month of celebration.” A panel of faculty and staff evaluated the proposals based on the depth of thought or reflection on King’s life or message; creativity, innovation and impact; collaboration, partnership, new audience engagement and new participants; creative marketing and visibility and management of financial resources.

Below are descriptions of the winning projects, which received grants ranging from $350 to $600:

“Hope to Life,” a project submitted by freshman JESSICA REED, who plans to conduct videotaped interviews with Stanford students and faculty to find out how they use their education to bring hope to their lives and to the lives of others. Reed plans to share these interviews with high school students and begin a discussion about how they can use education to fulfill their own dreams.

“Dr. King’s principles root deeply in my goal for this project,” Reed wrote in her proposal. “He once spoke to a group of middle school students in Philadelphia, saying, ‘Whenever a building is constructed, you usually have an architect who draws a blueprint, and that blueprint serves as the pattern, as the guide, and a building is not well erected without a good, solid blueprint.’ I desire to help students understand that they can use their education as a foundation for greatness. However, they also need hope to keep pursuing their education even when obstacles try to stop them.”

JUAN FLORES, a sophomore, proposed a project inspired by the It Gets Better Project designed to combat suicide among LGBT youth. Working with La Familia de Stanford, a queer and questioning Latina/o support and activism group, Flores seeks to incorporate elements from King’s “I Have a Dream” speech into the video that would be posted on the It Gets Better website. Organizers also want to reach out to LGBT teenagers with “mentorship and support” in high schools, homeless shelters “and/or where hope is needed most,” Flores wrote.

Senior MICHAEL TUBBS, who submitted a proposal on behalf of the Stanford Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), plans to implement an initiative to promote political education, empowerment and mobilization among marginalized youth, through voter registration activities for high school students in Oakland.

“As Dr. King once noted, ‘Almost always, the creative, dedicated minority has made the world better.’ We hope to transform the high school students of Oakland into the creative, dedicated citizens they have the potential to be and dispel the notion that young people are apathetic and uninvolved,” wrote Tubbs.

GILLIE COLLINS, a sophomore, proposed a storytelling event, developed in collaboration with STAND, a student anti-genocide coalition, designed to bring attention to the civil rights of Burmese civilians brutalized by the military junta that has ruled the country since 1962. “The Burma storytelling event would highlight these injustices by sharing relevant stories with the Stanford community that would otherwise go unheard,” Collins wrote. “This project is founded on the idea that all human beings deserve equal treatment and basic civil liberties, principles that guided Dr. King’s work.”

The winners of the challenge are expected to conduct their projects during the months of January and February and make a presentation to the Stanford community during the Student Affairs Assessment Poster Fair, which takes place in the spring.




Dedication of Tresidder among 2012 notable anniversaries

January 12th, 2012

Tresidder Memorial Union, named for Stanford's fourth president, Donald Tresidder, opened in 1962. This photo was taken in 1964.

Stanford will be celebrating a number of notable anniversaries in 2012, according to the Stanford Historical Society’s publication A Chronology of Stanford University and its Founders.

For instance, 25 years ago, Stanford cheerleading made a comeback after falling on hard times in the 1970s, the baseball team won the College World Series—a first for Stanford—and seismic concerns forced the abrupt closing of Roble Hall and relocation of 294 students.

Fifty years ago, Tresidder Memorial Union was dedicated, and 153,000 people came to Stanford Stadium to see a U.S.-Soviet Union track meet that culminated in “the Cold War rivals joining hands during the closing ceremony and marching in pairs past the stands before a roaring crowd.”


Seventy-five years ago, RUSSELL and SIGURD VARIAN began a collaboration with physicist WILLIAM HANSON that led to the invention of the klystron microwave tube, while dedications were held for both Frost Amphitheater and Memorial Hall. Also, the Hanna family moved into the now-famous house built for them by Frank Lloyd Wright.

What are other notable anniversaries? One hundred years ago, Lane Medical Library was dedicated at the Medical Department, which was then located in San Francisco. And, 125 years ago, the university’s cornerstone was laid at what is now Building 60 on what would have been LELAND STANFORD JUNIOR‘s 19th birthday.

A Chronology of Stanford University and its Founders (2001), written by KAREN BARTHOLOMEW, CLAUDE BRINEGAR and ROXANNE NILAN, can be purchased in the Stanford Bookstore.

Reimagining the arts at Stanford

January 11th, 2012

Since 2006, the Arts Initiative and the Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts, (SiCa), have initiated a wide range of programs designed to bring Stanford’s rich culture of arts and creativity to the fore.

SiCa has just released a report titled “2006-2011: Celebrating Five Years of the Stanford Arts Initiative.” The multimedia report includes a timeline of highlights in the arts on campus from its launch as part of The Stanford Challenge to the visit by musician and artist Yoko Ono; the groundbreaking for the Bing Concert Hall; and the announcement of the Anderson Collection at Stanford University.

According to the report, the initiative has made possible six endowed faculty positions and 18 graduate fellowships, hundreds of visiting artists and more than $1 million in grants to faculty and departments for arts events, programs and symposia.

The report also includes videos, many of which emphasize the interdisciplinary nature of the arts at Stanford. The video below, for instance, features JULIE RALPH, ’10, a math and computational science major.  There is footage of Ralph in the Stanford Ceramics Studio, which opened in 2008, and at Hopkins Marine Station, where the marine life inspired a ceramic collection she created called “Colonies.”

View the full report at

Colonies, Ceramics Inspired by Marine Life – Julie Ralph ’10 from SiCa on Vimeo.


Teresa Noyola wins Hermann Trophy; Lindsay Taylor comes in second

January 10th, 2012

TERESA NOYOLA won the Missouri Athletic Club’s Hermann Trophy on Friday, becoming the third Stanford player in as many years to win college soccer’s highest honor.  Noyola, a senior midfielder, was announced as the winner during a ceremony Friday, Jan. 6, attended by the three finalists, including teammate LINDSAY TAYLOR, the runner-up, and Penn State sophomore Maya Hayes.

“I had no idea what to expect,” Noyola said. “I’m very proud, and L.T. was equally deserving. She’s a class act – I already knew that. We were going to be happy for each other either way.”  The Palo Alto native follows former teammates KELLEY O’HARA (2009) and CHRISTEN PRESS (2010) in celebrating an unprecedented achievement in the 24 years of the women’s award. It marks the first time in its history that three different players from the same school have won the award in consecutive years.

Read the full announcement on the Stanford Athletics website.

King Institute to celebrate new memorial on National Mall

January 9th, 2012

The Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute will hold its annual celebration of the King holiday on Friday, Jan. 13. This year’s event will highlight the institute’s involvement in the recently dedicated King National Memorial in Washington, D.C., and last year’s Palestinian production of Passages of Martin Luther King, a play written by institute Director CLAYBORNE CARSON. The King Institute will present its Call to Conscience Award to photojournalist and civil rights activist Bob Fitch and to several cast members of last year’s Passages production. Palestinian actor Ramzi Maqdisi, who played King in the production, will be among those honored.

The King celebration will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. at Tresidder Memorial Union. The campus event is free and open to the public. There will be a reception for the first hour, after which Maqdisi and noted actor Aldo Billingslea of Santa Clara University will perform a dramatic reading of King’s “I Have A Dream” speech. ALETA HAYES, Stanford lecturer in dance, and CHEISI BUTLER, a Stanford alum, will provide vocal accompaniment for the reading. Internationally acclaimed vocalist Kim Nalley will perform, accompanied by celebrated jazz pianist Tammy Hall. Stanford student performances include the Chicago Collective with Jessica Anderson, Garry Mitchell, Kadesia Woods and Tyler Brooks and jazz saxophonist Waveney Hudlin. During the month of January, a display in the Tresidder lounge will feature images by Fitch.

The Martin Luther King Papers Project was established in 1985, when Coretta Scott King, founder and president of the King Center in Atlanta, asked Carson to edit the papers of her late husband. Under Carson’s direction, the principal mission of the King Papers Project is to publish a definitive 14-volume edition of King’s most significant correspondence, sermons, speeches, published writings and unpublished manuscripts. In 2005, the King Institute was founded to sustain the Papers Project and its related educational initiatives.

For further details on the performers and updates on King Holiday events at Stanford, visit

Pac-12 football schedule set; Big Game moves to October

January 6th, 2012

Photo by John Todd/

The Pac-12 Conference has released its 2012 football schedule and the biggest news is that the Big Game against Cal, which has traditionally been played in November, will be held Oct. 20 in Berkeley.

“The Oct. 20 date for Big Game in 2012 is certainly not our first choice but the conference is governed by the will of the majority, and we have a duty to respect the outcome of the vote,” said BOB BOWLSBY, Stanford’s director of athletics. “We will work with California and the Pac-12 Office to advocate for the Big Game and all rivalry games to be scheduled toward the end of the season in future years.”

Here’s the full schedule for 2012:

2012 Stanford Football Schedule
Sept. 1 – San Jose State
Sept. 8 – Duke
Sept. 15 – USC
Sept. 27 – at Washington
Oct. 6 – Arizona
Oct. 13 – at Notre Dame
Oct. 20 – at California
Oct. 27 – Washington State
Nov. 3 – at Colorado
Nov. 10 – Oregon State
Nov. 17 – at Oregon
Nov. 24 – at UCLA
Nov. 30 – Pac-12 Championship Game

For information on season tickets for the 2012 season, call 1-800-STANFORD.

Read the full announcement on the Athletics website.

Anna Deavere Smith’s ‘Let Me Down Easy’ set for PBS debut

January 5th, 2012

ANNA DEAVERE SMITH‘s one-woman theatrical performances are so brilliantly drawn, so carefully textured that watching her onstage is always a rich and rewarding experience. Her artistry has been saluted all over the country since the ’90s, when she captured American theater critics and audiences with two noted theatrical events: Twilight Los Angeles, about the LA riots following the trial of Rodney King, and Fires in the Mirror, about the Crown Heights civil disturbances,” PAUL COSTELLO, executive director of communications and public affairs at the School of Medicine, writes in the school’s SCOPE blog. “Now another solo performance by Smith, Let Me Down Easy, has become a national theatrical sensation.”

Written and performed by Smith, a former Stanford drama professor, Let Me Down Easy examines life, death and human resilience through the lens of  the current national debate on health care. Medical School Dean PHILIP PIZZO is one of the characters Smith depicts in the play.

A recorded performance of Let Me Down Easy will debut on PBS’s Great Performances Friday, Jan. 13, at 9 p.m.

To read Costello’s complete post, visit the SCOPE blog.

Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences adds board members

January 4th, 2012

The Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) recently elected three new members to its board of directors. The center, located on a hill overlooking the west side of the Stanford campus, is dedicated to making behavioral science relevant to the greater community. The three new directors:

Gary King

GARY KING, founder and director of Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science, develops and applies empirical methods in many areas of social science research, focusing on innovations that range from statistical theory to practical application. King joined the board Sept. 1.

Sara McCune

SARA MILLER MCCUNE is the executive chairman of SAGE Publications Inc., a book and journal publishing house based in Newbury Park, Calif., and of the McCune Foundation, based in Ventura, Calif.  McCune, a longtime friend of CASBS, is one of its principal benefactors. She joined the board Jan. 1.

William Neukom

WILLIAM H. NEUKOM, a 1967 graduate of Stanford Law School, was the lead lawyer for Microsoft Corp. for nearly 25 years. He is the founder and chief executive officer of the World Justice Project and is a partner on leave from the Seattle office of K&L Gates. Neukom served as the general managing partner and chief executive officer of the San Francisco Baseball Associates, L.P., the ownership group of the San Francisco Giants, from 2008 to 2011. Neukom joined the board Jan. 1.

Visit the center’s website for a full list of its board members.

— Kathleen J. Sullivan