As Memorial Day weekend approaches, we want to say thank you to the men and women in the armed forces and those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Reminders of respect and honor for their service are found throughout the UK campus such as Memorial Hall, Memorial Coliseum, Barker Hall/Buell Armory and the Spanish American War cannon.
Back in the day, the annual UK “Flag Rush” competition meant that freshman and sophomore classes would defend their flag from being captured by the competitors. In 1913, that rivalry was replaced by a “Tug of War” using a cable across Clifton Pond, resulting in many getting drenched but still happy to only have to attend a half day of classes.
Last month, UK President Eli Capilouto joined the president of the UK Student Development Council, Jonathon Nunley, Kentucky Historical Society Marker Program Coordinator Becky Riddle and others to dedicate the latest addition to the Live Blue Legacy historical marker program. This historical highway marker, the 19th in a series, pays tribute to UK student traditions dating back more than 100 years. The marker is made possible through donations from the Class of 2012.
Nunley, left, joined President Capilouto in unveiling the Class Competitions/Tug of War marker located near the William T. Young Library.
“The University of Kentucky is built on rich relationships and rich traditions. And all of those are continued person by person by person. And so while we collectively gather to recognize the tug of war, what we are really stating, arm-and-arm, is that our future is bright, we will build upon our tradition and we will honor those who certainly came before us. But we have our eye on the future, as well,” said President Capilouto.
By Linda Perry
If you have been on campus recently, you know how much it has changed in the last couple of years. And, believe it or not, more changes are coming our way! Just a couple of days ago the Board of Trustees approved the next phase of student housing construction. Phase II of this plan to expand and modernize student housing will develop three additional residence halls with 1,610 undergraduate beds at the Cooperstown site by August 2015. After these three resident halls are built, in addition to the new halls currently being built, the grand total of modern student accommodations will be 4,592.
Recognizing that the average age of UK’s current student housing is 45 years, UK President Eli Capilouto said, “This public private partnership has allowed the university to fulfill our promise of modern student housing in an astoundingly brief time frame while also reserving our debt capacity for other projects to modernize our classrooms.
“Not only will the student experience at the University of Kentucky be transformed, but the impact on our state and local economies is not to be underestimated. The university’s growth is not happening at the expense of Kentucky, but at its enrichment.”
Although it is bittersweet to see familiar, old structures being razed, it is exciting to watch the construction of fresh, new residence halls. We are sure that the memories made by students at the new residence halls will be just as great as the memories made by our alumni at the old residence halls. Have you been back to campus recently? What do you think of the “change of scenery?”
Information from UK PR & Marketing
UK President Eli Capilouto recently announced that Christine Riordan has accepted the role of University of Kentucky provost. Riordan, who is currently dean of the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver, will begin her service at the start of the fall semester, subject to approval of her appointment by the Board of Trustees at its May 14 meeting.
In a recent blog post, Capilouto stated: “Dr. Riordan, among many things, was impressed by the vitality and sense of commitment she saw in our campus during both her research about us and her visit with us last week. As those of you who met her can tell, Dr. Riordan is already passionate about this institution – our responsibility to enroll Kentuckians and see that they graduate; our deeply rooted sense of commitment to service as part of our land-grant mission; and our potential as a first-tier research institution to play a leading role in public higher education at a time when, more than ever, we need to be at the forefront of addressing the incredible challenges faced by our state, country and world. Dr. Riordan and her family are excited about joining our community in the coming months. I know you join me in welcoming them to UK.”
To read more about Riordan’s appointment, click here.
Christopher Berger ’08 ED is an exercise physiologist and assistant professor at the University of Indianapolis. He was recently featured in The New York Times promoting a healthy lifestyle for travelers in airports. Instead of sitting stagnantly waiting on a flight, Berger suggests using this time as the perfect opportunity to be active. And, as the article reveals, Berger certainly practices what he preaches. To read The New York Times article featuring Berger, click here.
It’s summertime on UK’s campus! UK students wrapped up final exams last week and we welcomed a new group of graduates into the UK alumni family during Commencement on Sunday. Although we miss our students, there is something very calming about campus during summer break. We’re wondering, how did you spend your summer breaks in college?
With UK’s graduation ceremony on May 5, inspiring stories of perseverance and accomplishment abound. However, the story of Josh Nadzam ’11 ’13 SW is extra special. Despite growing up in less than stellar circumstances, Nadzam has risen above his past and is on his way to making a profound impact on those in need.
Nadzam knows firsthand what it’s like to grow up in “the projects,” surrounded by crime, poverty and drug abuse. Faced with circumstances growing up that many people can’t imagine, Nadzam is taking his life experience and the education he has received at the University of Kentucky to build his dream of helping others in similar situations realize a better life.
Growing up in the small town of Manaca, Penn., Nadzam dreamed of escape. Entrenched in poverty, he was raised by a single mom who fought hard to give her son as normal a life as possible despite battling a mental illness that often left her hospitalized for months at a time. His father, who battled alcohol and drug addictions, was in and out of his life.
Nadzam was a three-sport athlete in high school and decided his way out was through his athletic ability. He applied to numerous Division 1 schools in hopes of receiving a scholarship. One by one, he was turned down until an offer of a walk-on position on the track and field team came from UK.
Nadzam has excelled in both academics and sports while at UK and is set to graduate May 5 with academic honors and a master’s degree in social work from the UK College of Social Work. One of his final projects in graduate school came about after a friend recommended that he read a book called Make the Impossible Possible by Bill Strickland, the founder and CEO of Manchester Bidwell, a nonprofit empowerment program that began in Pittsburgh and has been replicated so far in San Francisco, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Grand Rapids, and New Haven. Strickland has received innumerable accolades for his work. Among his honors include the Goi Peace Award, the MacArthur Fellowship, and an appointment to President Obama’s White House Council on Community Solutions.
“After I read his book I had to the opportunity to meet him and exchange information,” Nadzam said. “After some conversation through email, I told him I wanted to make this happen in Lexington. Since then, I have worked extensively with him and his team in Pittsburgh to bring this project to reality.”
To read more about Nadzam and his goal of bringing Manchester Bidwell to Lexington click here.
Story by Ann Blackford, UK Public Relations and Marketing
Ted Lecrenski ’69 AS, ’70 ED and Tembra Lecrenski are avid UK fans who recently retired to Lexington from the Pacific Northwest. Although a world away, culturally and geographically, the Lecrenskis are excited and happy to be home in the heart of Wildcat country. Read more about their journey!
Why do you love UK so much?
Tembra: When I met Ted he was a huge UK basketball fan! It was great to become a Wildcat fan and be able to cheer on athletes in a quality program. People out west have no idea what it means to be a Kentucky Wildcat basketball fan. I totally get it after being a fan now for 25 years. And now that we are retired here, we have been able to have season tickets to volleyball, women’s basketball, men’s basketball and will have season tickets to UK football next year.
Ted: Having spent quite a bit of time here going to school I absolutely fell in love with, not just the university, but also the state and people. Everyone treated me like an old friend and welcomed me with open arms. I traveled about the state a bit while at UK and found it to be a beautiful state. While a student at UK, I received the foundation for a very rewarding career in education which I am very grateful for. I had some outstanding instructors at UK who not only helped me with my career goals but also provided valuable life lessons. I also befriended many terrific fellow students from around the country and consider my years at UK as some of the best years of my life.
Do you enjoy being involved with the UK Alumni Association through events and activities?
Tembra: This is my first year of actually living in Lexington and being able to take part in alumni events. Last fall we attended a couple of alumni Classes Without Quizzes and then went to Keeneland on Alumni Day and attended the Homecoming football game. During this spring’s Alumni Weekend we went to the event at Country Boy Brewing and to the Vino & Voices at King Alumni House, followed by attending the UK Football Blue/White scrimmage. It has been wonderful being able to meet UK alums and begin to make connections with other Wildcat fans.
Ted: We have met a lot of great people that work at the UK Alumni Association and also many alumni who have come for the Alumni Weekends. It’s a great opportunity to meet new people and hear their stories about UK and what they are now doing.
What is your favorite UK memory?
Tembra: Being in attendance in Rupp Arena for the UK men’s basketball team’s 2000th win and having my picture taken with Randall Cobb at the UK Women’s Football Clinic!
Ted: Probably one of the most impressive things for me, even today, was being a student in Thomas D. Clark’s Kentucky History class. He was an amazing man and fantastic instructor and I will never forget that experience. Also, receiving a handwritten letter from the one and only Adolph Rupp has to rank pretty high on the list as well.
Although spring has officially been here for a little over a month, we here at UK haven’t felt the warm sun and seen the blooming flowers that we are accustomed to this time of year. Over the last couple of weeks, warmer weather has come our way and we couldn’t be more excited. The UK campus is finally budding to life. The many pink and white dogwood trees and vibrant tulips scattered across campus were some of the first to usher in the new season. Where was your favorite outdoor spot on campus to hang out at this time of year?
University of Kentucky Athletics presented 24 honors at the 11th annual CATSPY Awards, held Monday at Memorial Coliseum to recognize athletic and academic performance during the 2012-13 year. With co-winners in some categories, a total of four teams and 18 individuals were recognized.
Gymnastics and Rifle were named Team of the Year for their achievements. The gymnastics team posted the program’s highest-ever NCAA Regional team score with a 195.575. Competing in the nation’s top gymnastics conference, Kentucky finished the Southeastern Conference schedule with three wins, the most in school history, highlighted by a home-opening victory over then-No. 9 Arkansas. UK also beat then-No. 13 Auburn twice, and tied then-No. 6 Georgia at home.
The rifle team posted its second consecutive national runner-up finish, while claiming a Great America Rifle Conference regular season championship and a second-place finish at the GARC Championships. The season also included a record-setting win over Army, a match in which Kentucky broke the program records for total aggregate score, aggregate smallbore, individual aggregate score and individual smallbore.
To view all award winners, click here.
Content and photo courtesy of UK Athletics