Shilling Lecture

Jane Goodall took questions from three Southwestern students after delivering the 2013 Shilling Lecture April 2. Read what some of those who attended the lecture thought about it here. (Photo by Lance Holt)

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Southwestern students will have the opportunity to showcase their work through poster presentations, oral presentations, performances and exhibitions as the university hosts the 14th annual Student Works Symposium Tuesday, April 9.

This year’s symposium will feature 126 students presenting 96 projects from 19 disciplines. The symposium will begin at 5 p.m. with oral presentations in the Campus Center Ballrooms, Roy B. Shilling, Jr. Room, Margaret Shilling Room and the Merzbach Room. Musical performances and welcoming remarks will be held in the Bishop’s Lounge at 6 p.m., followed by poster presentations and creative works and exhibitions at 7 p.m. Additional creative works and exhibitions, including Senior Art Exhibitions, will be presented at 6:30 p.m. in the Sarofim School of Fine Arts lobby. The Symposium will conclude with a continuation of oral presentations from 8-9 p.m.

For the complete symposium schedule, visit


Rachel Thibodeau, an All-American volleyball player who also has a cumulative 4.0 GPA, has been selected to receive a prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship.

The scholarship is worth $7,500 and can be used for part-time or full-time postgraduate study at a university or professional school. Thibodeau was one of 58 students-athletes across all divisions who were selected to receive the award this year. To qualify, student-athletes must excel academically and athletically, be in their final year of eligibility and plan to pursue graduate study.

Thibodeau is the only student-athlete in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference to receive the scholarship this year and one of only 12 women who play in Division III.

“It is a huge honor, and I’m really proud of it, but none of it could have been accomplished without my team and my coaches, the whole athletic staff or the faculty at Southwestern,” Thibodeau said.

Read more here.



Southwestern is hosting a community forum on transportation this Friday, April 5, from 8-9:30 a.m. in Room 105 of the Olin Building. The forum will include an update on the Project Connect Mass Transit System and then a panel discussion featuring representatives from the cities of Georgetown, Pflugerville and Round Rock.

Interested community members are invited to attend.    


Students are hosting a Safe Love Fashion Show on Sunday, April 7, to help spread the word that HIV-AIDS is preventable. The show will begin at 1 p.m. in the Howry Center and is free and open to the public.

The Safe Love Campaign is an outgrowth of EBONY, the Austin Chapter of The Links Incorporated, and area high school students.                       


Susan Sidlauskas, a professor of art history at Rutgers University, will speak on “Paying it Forward: Edouard Manet and Contemporary Art” on Thursday, April 11, at 4 p.m. in Olin 110.
Sidlauskas is one of the foremost figures in the area of 19th century art history. She is the author of Cézanne’s Significant Other: The Portraits of Hortense (University of California Press, 2009), and Body, Place, and Self in Nineteenth-Century Painting (Cambridge University Press, 2000), as well as numerous articles and book chapters on 19th century art. Her work on the body, concepts of self, and gender in the art of Cézanne, Degas, Sargent and others has shaped the field in significant ways, and she continues to make major contributions to our understanding of how art, sexuality and cultural ideology intersect in European 19th century visual culture.  

The lecture is sponsored by the Sarofim School of Fine Arts Visiting Artist and Scholar Series. For more information, contact Kim Smith at


Southwestern is hosting a free screening of the new documentary LaDonna Harris: Indian 101 by Comanche filmmaker Julianna Brannum on Thursday, April 11, at 4 p.m. in Olin 105. Brannum will be at Southwestern for the screening and will participate in a Q & A session after the film.

For more information on Brannum and the film, visit


Violinist Kevork Mardirossian and pianist Lee Phillips will give a guest recital on Tuesday, April 16, at 7 p.m. the Alma Thomas Theater. The program includes works by George Frideric Handel, Johannes Brahms, Johann Sebastian Bach and Joseph-Maurice Ravel.

Mardirossian and Phillips are both on the music faculty at Indiana University in Bloomington.

The performance is free and open to the public. For more information, contact The Sarofim School of Fine Arts at 512-863-1504.


Eileen Meyer Russell, associate professor of music, and guest artist Ayren Huslig will give a recital on Wednesday, April 17, at 7 p.m. in the Alma Thomas Theater. Meyer Russell will perform on low brass instruments and Huslig, who is the principal harpist for the San Antonio Opera, will perform on the harp.

The concert will consist of new music for low brass, including a commission by Austin composer Gary Slechta and two compositions written by Southwestern University students. Slechta’s composition, “Texas Medley,” is written for trombone, euphonium and harp. Students Laura Brackney and Stinson Seuser have composed a piece for instruments capable of alternate tuning and tuning forks. Ashley Kraft has composed a song for trombone and soprano titled “Let Down,” with text by poet Sara Teasdale. Keeley Hooker, who is also a Southwestern student, will sing with Meyer Russell on “Let Down.” 

In addition to the premieres of original works, Meyer Russell and Huslig will perform two of their original transcriptions for harp and euphonium: G. F. Handel’s Aria and Variations and Alessondro Parisotti’s Se tu m’ami, se sospiri (attributed to Giovanni Pergolesi). Meyer Russell and Huslig will also perform a new arrangement of “Sentimental Reasons” by William Best that was created for their duo by Marc LaChance, trombone professor at Hastings College in Nebraska.

The performance is free and open to the public. For more information, call The Sarofim School of Fine Arts at 512-863-1504.

Media Coverage

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about senior volleyball player Rachel Thibodeau receiving an NCAA postgraduate scholarship.

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about three students and their King Creativity Project, which involves building a low-cost dome structure.

The Austin American-Statesman, The Williamson County Sun and Community Impact newspaper covered the 2013 Shilling Lecture featuring Jane Goodall. Read the Statesman story here.

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about Michael Douglas being named director of the Texas Life Sciences Collaboration Center.

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about the SU Arts Festival planned by students.


Bob Bednar, associate professor and chair of communication studies, had an article titled “Roadside Shrines: A Search For Meaning” published in the March 31 Insight & Books section of The Austin American-Statesman. Read the story here.

Juniors Susana Contreras and Nathan Tuttle have been chosen to participate in the American Sociological Association’s 2013 Honors Program. The program selects “exceptional sociology students from throughout the country and the world” to participate in the American Sociological Association’s annual meeting, attend receptions, and develop long-lasting professional networks. This year’s meeting will be held Aug. 10-13 in New York City. Contreras will present a paper titled “Silencing and Celebrating: How Professors React to the Personal Experiences of Students of Color,” which was written under the direction of Sandi Nenga, associate professor of sociology. Tuttle will present a paper titled “Attitudes Toward Immigrant Workers in the United States and Argentina,” which was written under the direction of Reggie Byron, assistant professor of sociology.

Senior Megan Robinson also will be participating in the ASA 2013 Honors Program after winning second place in the 2013 competition for best undergraduate paper sponsored by Alpha Kappa Delta, the international honorary association in sociology. Robinson won the award for her paper titled “I’m Feeding the World Tonight: The Impact of Moral Identity Standards on Mobile Loaves and Fishes Homeless Outreach Ministry,” which was written under the direction of Maria Lowe, professor of sociology.

Erin Crockett, assistant professor of psychology, and students Sara Goodman and Quinlyn Morrow are presenting posters this week at a meeting of the Southwestern Psychological Association in Fort Worth. Goodman is presenting a poster titled “Perceptions of dating in adolescence and self-esteem in emerging adulthood” and Morrow is presenting a poster titled “Associations between friendship gender composition and interdependence.”

Sophomore environmental studies major Adrienne Dodd has been accepted to participate in the Critical Language Program sponsored by the U.S. State Department in China this summer. She will spend eight weeks studying at Xiamen University in Xiamen, China. Read more here.

Shannon Mariotti, associate professor of political science, presented a paper titled “The Housekeeper of Homelessness: The Democratic Ethos of Marilynne Robinson’s Novels and Essays” at the Western Political Science Association conference in Hollywood, Calif., March 29.

Kate Nelson, studio arts technician, has had work accepted into America’s Clayfest at BlueLine Arts Gallery in Roseville, Calif., and an exhibit titled Less is More: Small Works in a Great Space at the Mitchell Gallery at St. Johns College in Annapolis, Md. She also has a solo exhibition and lecture planned for next year at Pittsburg State University.

Michael Saenger, associate professor of English, wrote a review of The Oxford History of Popular Print Culture, vol. 1, Cheap Print in Britain and Ireland to 1660 that appeared in the most recent issue of Notes and Queries, a publication of Oxford University Press.

President Jake B. Schrum has had a paper accepted for publication in Change magazine.


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