Harpur College Recognizes Longtime Employees

Dean Mileur thanks Margaret Reitz for a decade of teaching music.

Luncheon honors Harpur College faculty and staff with 10 and 25 years of dedication.

Dean Mileur personally congratulated faculty and staff with 10 and 25 years of service at a luncheon in their honor on November 12, 2002. This annual celebration gives the Dean the opportunity to thank our valued faculty and staff for maintaining the standard of excellence for which Harpur College is known. The following people have reached 10 and 25 year anniversaries at Harpur College:

10 years:

25 years:

Dean Mileur congratulates Professor Steven Dickman for twenty-five years of service.

During the luncheon, many of the honorees spoke positively of their careers at Harpur College. "It's been a great privilege to work with Binghamton University students, faculty and staff for 25 years," said Elizabeth "Libby" Tucker, associate professor of English, who reached her silver anniversary at Harpur College this year. "The time has gone by very quickly because I've enjoyed it here so much," she said.

Loring Bixler, adjunct lecturer of Art, who attended the luncheon to celebrate a decade of teaching graphic design at Harpur College, said the best part of his job is working with students.

The event itself earned praise among the attendees. "The celebratory lunch for 10 and 25 year service was such a good occasion to reflect on the last ten years of teaching at the University," remarked Ingeborg Majer-O'Sickey, associate professor and interim chair of German, Russian and East Asian Languages. "I think that rituals are very important, not only because they give a sense of the past in our present lives, and because they set up traditions at our relatively young University, but because they are an opportunity to connect in a social way with colleagues and staff from various departments."

Dean Mileur expressed his appreciation for the longtime contributions of our staff and faculty and told the honored guests, "No university or organization can run for five minutes without people with the kind of experience and commitment that you have. We hope to see you for many more years."


Alumni Attorneys "Meet and Greet" in NYC
by A. Lee Nesslage and Roberto T. de la Fuente `98

Dean Mileur (center) with hosts Lobenfeld (left) and Medwick (right).

The Harpur College Alumni Law Council held its fourth annual New York City law alumni reception at the largest law firm in the world, Clifford Chance, US LLP. Partners Eric J. Lobenfeld '71 and Craig S. Medwick '74 hosted the event at their offices in the Metropolitan Life Building on Park Avenue.

Close to 100 law alumni gathered to meet and greet. Those attending had the opportunity to network and connect with their fellow attorneys. Spanning a wide array of grad years, the evening was filled with fun and nostalgia. Many attendees took the opportunity to exchange information in the hopes of developing future business contacts.

Lobenfeld and Medwick welcomed their fellow alumni and spoke about how Harpur College had made a difference in their lives. Jean-Pierre Mileur, Dean of Harpur College, provided an update on the state of the University. He described new academic programs, the challenge of increased enrollment, campus construction and the athletics program.

Law Council chair, Rich Alpern `69, spoke about projects and programs sponsored by the Harpur Law Council, including the summer internships for undergraduates hoping to attend law school in the future. He encouraged all alumni attorneys to support these efforts and to reconnect with Binghamton University.

Steven Lowenthal `92 and wife Judy Stein and Jordan Sklar `83

Kemp Reaves `84, Lucy Mendiata `92 and Steven Forrester `94

In between conversation and refreshments, alumni listened to remarks from Dean Mileur and Rich Alpern `69, Law Council Chair.

The Harpur Law Council was formed in 1995 to serve the needs and interests of Binghamton University alumni attorneys and pre-law students. Its goal is to strengthen the university's mission and tradition of academic excellence. The Harpur Law Council advises the Harpur College Dean and the University Alumni Association on matters regarding academic issues and programs relevant to the legal profession. Through a comprehensive mix of volunteer opportunities and programs, the Harpur Law Council cultivates positive relationships among law alumni, students, and the campus community. For more information about alumni events for lawyers, contact Lee Nesslage at 607-777-4278 or nesslage@binghamton.edu.


Scholarship Donors and Recipients Honored at Luncheon

Scholarship recipients met and thanked their donors at Binghamton University’s Scholarship Luncheon on November 16, 2002. This annual event recognizes students who have earned scholarships as well as the donors who have made such awards possible.

Tony Yep '03 is a psychobiology major who received one of the Dr. Dominick A. and Susan G. Artuso Scholarships for students who plan to attend medical school. "The scholarship is making a big difference," he said at the luncheon. "My family has been unable to help, so this has been extremely important."

Scholarship donors Marilynn and Pete Gruber, Professor Emeritus of English

Pete Gruber, Professor Emeritus of English, taught at Harpur College for 28 years. He recalls teaching at the old Colonial Hall when Harpur had only 450 students and the faculty to student ratio was 7 to 1. Gruber and his wife, Marilynn, endowed a scholarship for English and Theatre majors because his daughter, Ilse, majored in Theater and his son, Christian Paul, majored in English. Gruber said, "This school has been very good to me," and endowing a scholarship is one way of saying thanks.

Libby Knapp with her scholarship recipient, Hannah Gates `03

Elizabeth "Libby" Knapp, who retired as Director of Institutional Research in 1985, has a scholarship in her name to help women of any major pursue their higher educational goals. At the luncheon, she met Hannah Gates '03 (SEHD). "The scholarship has been so helpful," said Gates, who is married to a full-time student and has two young children. "I wouldn't be here without it!"

Nancy Phillips, treasurer of the BU Foundation, told attendees that the recently concluded campaign added 100 new scholarships. She thanked everyone who has made a scholarship possible and congratulated the recipients.

President DeFleur said scholarships allow the University to attract the most ambitious, talented and diverse students. She thanked the donors and said, "We are gradually, over time, putting together a nice array of scholarships."

Scholarship donors Jennifer Brink Schorr (MBA) `81 and Larry Schorr `75 (M.A.) `77

Larry Schorr '75 (MA) '77 and his wife Jennifer Brink Schorr (MBA) '81 established three scholarships: Resource Recycling Technologies, Inc. Environmental Studies Scholarship, the Lawrence and Jennifer Schorr Scholarship for English majors interested in technology, and the Lawrence and Jennifer Schorr Scholarship for students who have transferred to Binghamton University from Broome Community College. Schorr, who addressed the gathering as the keynote speaker, remarked that scholarships help recognize students’ hard work and give them incentive to keep going. He also commented on how meaningful it is for him and his wife to support the school in this way.

A list of Harpur College Scholarships, their benefactors, and their requirements can be viewed at http://bingfa.binghamton.edu/harpur.htm.

For more information about how to create a Harpur College scholarship, please contact Debby Scalet, director of development at dscalet@binghamton.edu or call 607-777-4277.



From Boardroom to Classroom: Mark S. Newman `71 Shares His Expertise

The students in Professor Steve Scalet's Intermediate Microeconomics class have learned about the "theory of consumer behavior" and the "theory of the firm." On Wednesday, October 30, 2002, they had the chance to hear how these theories apply to the real world. Mark S. Newman (pictured left), who graduated from Harpur College in 1971 with a degree in Economics, is chairman of the board, president, and chief executive officer of DRS Technologies, Inc. Newman attended Scalet's class and shared his perspective on several issues.

Newman spoke to the students about his experiences at Harpur College and in the real world, as well as the path that brought him to where he is today. He discussed his liberal arts education and the importance of critical thinking, which is extremely important in his industry; focused on defense electronics, DRS Technologies, Inc. develops and manufactures a broad range of mission critical systems and components in the areas of communications, combat systems, rugged computers, electro-optics, data storage, digital imaging, flight safety and space.

As a CEO, Newman makes dozens of critical decisions daily. Many are internal to his own organization, while others involve business deals with companies and entities outside of his firm. Because you can not always assume that people are as rational as economic theory hypothesizes, said Newman, you need to be a student of human behavior to be successful in these transactions. He stressed the importance of creating an ethical climate within a business culture and an environment of trust.

Newman answered several questions from students throughout his presentation and ended by giving a few suggestions from his own experience. He recommended that students treat school like a job: work a full day, study hard and get the most out of your education. Not only do you benefit from this greatly, you also prepare yourself for what it's like to work a real job. Find what you love to do and do it well, always giving it your best.


Dean's Workshop Features Korean Language Expert

Professor Ho-min Sohn explained how instructors can help Americans learn Korean.

Last month, Ho-min Sohn from the University of Hawaii at Manoa presented "Why is Korean a Category 4 Language and What Should We Do About it?" at the Harpur College Dean's Foreign Language Pedagogy Workshop. Aimed at both students and language teachers, Professor Sohn explained the difficulties English speakers face in trying to learn Korean and what they can do to overcome them.

The U.S. Foreign Service Institute has classified Korean (together with Chinese, Japanese and Arabic) as belonging to "Category 4," the most difficult group of languages for adult Americans to learn for oral communication. Harpur College offers Korean as a second language, making the school one of a very small, elite group that offers such an uncommon subject.

English and Korean are literally worlds apart. Sohn said Korean's linguistic structure is much more complex than English, the characters are difficult to read and write, and pronunciation is tricky on the untrained ear.

Korean uses Chinese characters, of which there are 50,000, and its own alphabet as well. "To learn Korean comprehensively, you have to learn both scripts," said Sohn. "That's a lot to memorize!"

If writing weren't enough of a challenge, students also have to learn to spell the words. "Pure Korean is phonetic, which is is difficult because there is not a right or wrong way to spell out the way something sounds. Reading Korean is difficult for the same reason. It's hard to translate Korean's spelling into sound," said Sohn. Another way Korean is written is by the meaning of the word; therefore, students of the language must know the definition of the word in order to write it.

Korean is a "tone language." Using different pitches and volumes does not just emphasize a word, as it does in English. They actually distinguish one word from another. New Korean speakers have to train their ears and voices for this.

Pronouncing Korean is difficult for Americans because of inflections, which is adding letters to a word to change its tense or number (for instance, changing "speak" to "spoke"). As is the case with any foreign language, Korean's got its own set of rules and exceptions.

Sohn said cultural differences between the East and West make Korean so difficult for Americans to learn. Speakers can use the same form of the verb for first, second and third person, but depending on the "status" of the speaker and listener, different forms of the verb are used. Harpur College student, Rosa S. Choi `04, who is Korean-American, agreed. "One difficulty stems from the difference between addressing an equal or an adult," she explained. "It can be analogous to being polite, but in Korean, you change the way you speak to show respect."

Sometimes, Western languages will share words, for instance, the word "school" is Dutch, "kindergarten" is German, "plaza" is Spanish and "fiasco" is Italian. However, Korean shares very little vocabulary with English. Choi said some words exist in Korean for which there are no English translations. "In Korean, there is a specific way of saying grandmother on either your mother's side or your father's side," she said.

Harpur College student, Roy Chung `05, also Korean-American, remarked that Americans can find learning Korean difficult because "one word in English can have several meanings in Korean, and each meaning has a different word."

Learning the syntax (word order) of Korean is another challenge for English speakers. English tends to use subject, verb, object, while Korean uses subject, object verb. "Because of that, all kinds of differences appear. Sentences are reversed," explained Sohn.

However, he remained optimistic that with hard work, students can build a bridge between the East and West. By identifying the challenges and training language instructors how to overcome them, Americans can indeed learn Korean as a foreign language.

Korean studies at Harpur College has 100 students for language classes each semester, 20% of among which are non-heritage students, 50 students for culture classes (for instance, "Language, Culture and Society in Korea"), mentioned by Associate Professor Sungdai Cho, who is organizing this workshop. Foreign language programs in the future should target a non-heritage population, spreading out its culture to the diverse American community, while at the same time refining language skills for heritage-students.


Heard Around Campus: Viola Fest 2002

Harpur College heard the sound of music on Saturday, November 16 when more than 100 violists from across New York and Connecticut practiced and performed their instruments together in the Anderson Center. Sponsored by the New York String Teachers Association and the National School Orchestra Association (NYSTA / NSOA), Viola Fest 2002 was the first of its kind and, according to its president, Carlos Mendez, Jr. `96 (MA), a roaring success.

A viola is slightly larger than a violin and lower pitched. If a string orchestra were a choir or voices, the violas would be the alto singers.

Young violists perfected their technique at Viola Fest on November 16.

The violists, comprised of 85 students and 18 adults, spent the day learning about improvisation, posture, technique, and movement from expert musicians. More advanced players took "master classes," in which teachers critiqued their individual performances. Students got a break in the middle of the day when instructors took center stage and gave a concert of their own. Viola Fest ended with a grand finale concert where every violist got to perform with his or her own skill level.

Carlos Mendez, Jr. `96 (MA) hopes violists continue playing for life.

Mendez said he and Roberta Crawford, adjunct lecturer of music, thought of viola fest several years ago, but he did not have the resources to make it a reality until he became president of NYSTA / NSOA. "Viola is kind of neglected. This is something they could call their very own," he said.

Mendez said feedback from participants will determine the future of Viola Fest, but a sequel definitely looks promising. "The kids loved this," he said. "They think it's 'neat' to see so many other kids who play the viola too."

According to the NSOA, there will be a shortage of about 5,000 string teachers in the next decade. Mendez, an orchestra teacher in Syracuse, hopes events like Viola Fest will inspire students to continue music lessons and eventually follow in his footsteps.


Harpur Friends & Family

In response to your much-appreciated feedback, the Harpur Hotline has developed a regular feature of alumni news. Please send us anything you want: publications, promotions, marriages, babies, graduations, retirements, etc. Many thanks to everyone who shared their stories. Here's what some of your fellow Harpur alumni and friends are doing:

1952: Gordie Evans shared some of his early Harpur College memories with the Hotline. "I was just out of Binghamton High School when my older brother Bob enrolled under the GI Bill in what was known as Triple Cities College. He inspired me to also enroll and we both graduated in 1952." Evans recalls Dean Glenn Bartle as a "warm and inspirational person" who invited students to socialize at his house in Maine, NY. Evans remembers taking classes in temporary buildings at Colonial Hall in Endicott (hence, our former mascot, "The Colonials"). "In my third year," he said, "Triple Cities College became Harpur College." After graduation, Evans was drafted and served in the Korean War. He recently retired after 30 years in the insurance industry. Evans and his wife, Ann, will soon celebrate their 52nd anniversary and have children and grandchildren in New Hampshire, Virginia and Texas.

1982: Seth Hammerman has made a career change. He recently left his job as managing consultant at Lucent Technologies and is now senior sales engineer at Goldwire Technology, responsible for the metropolitan New York region. Hammerman can be reached at seth@hammerman.ws. He sends his greetings to all his old Hinman pals from Smith Hall, 1979.

1989: Interested in math? Christopher J. Fearnley recently released an updated version of the R. Buckminister Fuller FAQ about the renowned inventor of the geodesic dome, the world game, and a new system of mathematics called synergetics. Fearnley's personal web page is a fascinating array of philosophy, math, essays, and Linux (an alternative to Windows). He resides in the Philadelphia area and works as a Linux and Internet consultant.

1993: Richard Feldman (Ph.D.) is associate professor and chair of environmental science at Marist College. His research interests include Hudson River ecology and protection, sustainable agriculture, and food production without the use of pesticides or manufactured fertilizers. Feldman advises SEGA (Students Encouraging Global Awareness) at Marist. He and his wife, Melanie Knutson, got married 1997 and adopted their son, Adam (pictured left), in 2000. The Feldmans live in Shokan, NY.

1998: After a year of working on Wall Street at Bear Stearns as a reorganization management trainee, David Rosensweet joined Prudential Financial a financial advisor. His greatest professional accomplishment thus far has been forming the Diamond Consulting Group, an investment consulting team within his firm. Rosensweet works with institutional and retail clients to achieve their financial goals. He hopes to eventually earn an MBA in Finance to better serve his clients.

1999: Kevin R. Cohen's stellar performance in the Berkshire Theater Festival's production of Brownstone won him a role on the musical's upcoming soundtrack. He will be recording with Broadway stars Liz Calloway, Brian d`Arcy James, Debby Gravitte and Rebecca Luker. The Internet magazine curtain called Cohen (using the stage name Kevin Reed) "a standout in terms of vocal, acting and movement," and said his performance of "Pretty City" is one of the musical's "high points." Cohen lives in New York City and continues to pursue a career on the stage.


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Students Cindy Sommer and Lindsay Warren model some of Harpur College's clothing.

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Editor's note: if you have trouble locating Harpur College merchandise on the bookstore's website, please contact the bookstore at 607-777-2745.


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November 7, 2002
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2000 & 2001 Hotlines


Harpur College Development Team Mission Statement:

The Harpur College of Arts and Sciences Development Team encourages alumni, students, faculty and friends to identify with Harpur College's past, present and future by engaging them in events and programs that connect them to the college. We facilitate ways for our constituents to enrich Harpur College through their financial contributions and personal talents and resources.

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