Winter 2009

Winter 2009

About this issue

VIDEO

Go inside the scrum with the men and women of U.Va. rugby.

Meet the new director of the Virginia Film Festival, which featured several movies by alumni.

Hop aboard a bio-fueled bus that redefines the concept of meals on wheels.

CONNECT ONLINE

Find out what your classmates are up to with online Class Notes, now with photos, videos and social networking links. Publish your own note easily with our online form.

NEW: Vmail now available

Alumni e-mail for life provides you with an “@alumni.virginia.edu” address that’s hosted on Google’s popular Gmail service. Get your new Vmail address by signing up at HoosOnline.

Lunar Lunacy

Lunar Lunacy

Phil Plait battles ‘bad science’

Phil Plait (Grad ’90, ’94) has a simple lesson plan. Known Webwide as “The Bad Astronomer,” he wants to stop bad science, especially the spread of misinformation about all things celestial.

Space Odyssey

Space Odyssey

Alumni who have “the right stuff”

Beginning in the 1960s and continuing through the most recent shuttle flight, UVA alumni have journeyed beyond the earth's bounds to work—and walk—in space.

How Did We Get Here?

How Did We Get Here?

A quick guide to the health care debate

A “pocket guide” to why this debate is happening and what circumstances have propelled reform initiatives, as told by UVA faculty experts.

Bringing the Hospital to the People

Bringing the Hospital to the People

800 medical professionals. 1,800 volunteers. 2,700 patients. 1 weekend of free health care.

Inside beige tents, medical staff from the University of Virginia provide free health care to anyone who comes to the Wise County Fairgrounds. Meet a few of the people who depend on the Remote Area Medical clinic for medical treatment, as well as those who volunteer their services.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

A collection of University esoterica

Do you know which popular soft drink is named for a UVA alumnus? Or how about the top-secret military experiments conducted in the shadow of the Rotunda?

Kathryn Thornton: Aiming for the Stars

Kathryn Thornton: Aiming for the Stars

Beginning in the 1960s and continuing through the most recent shuttle flight, UVA alumni have journeyed beyond the earth's bounds to work—and walk—in space.

University Digest

Campaign Hits $2 Billion

Campaign Hits $2 Billion

Against the backdrop of the deepest recession since the 1930s, the University announced on Sept. 14 that it had reached the $2 billion mark in its $3 billion fundraising campaign.

Holding Steady

Holding Steady

This year’s U.S. News & World Report’s rankings of America’s best colleges yielded a familiar outcome for the University.

Minding Manners

Minding Manners

Lack of respect and courtesy constitute a serious national problem, according to a study conducted in 2002, and most people interviewed saw the problem as getting worse.

Verbatim

Verbatim

For 20 years, our state has put essentially every other priority ahead of education. It has done this for so long that most people simply take it for granted now that the state can dodge this most basic of its obligations.

Fresh Art

Fresh Art

The University of Virginia Art Museum reopened after a $2 million summer renovation.

Breaking Through, Looking Back

Breaking Through, Looking Back

More than two dozen alumni recently returned to Grounds to commemorate their role in desegregating the University of Virginia during the 1950s and ’60s.

Bookmarked: UVA on iTunesU

Bookmarked: UVA on iTunesU

The University of Virginia channel is now up and running on iTunes U—the higher education portion of Apple’s iTunes store.

Story Genius

Story Genius

Short story writer Deborah Eisenberg was awarded a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant in September.

Small Town, Big Acts

Small Town, Big Acts

Renovated venues have helped bring an impressive assortment of musical headliners to Grounds.

Space-Age Eraser

Space-Age Eraser

Conservators used a laser to clean 180 years of grime from the column capitals of Pavilion II.

Sports

Confidence Game

Confidence Game

Whitney Neuhauser stood over her second shot in a playoff for the state championship and committed the golfer’s ultimate sin. She doubted.

Arts

Required Reading: R. Jahan Ramazani

Required Reading: R. Jahan Ramazani

Professor R. Jahan Ramazani (Col ’81), chair of the English department, edited the Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry, co-edited the 20th-century volume of the Norton Anthology of English Literature and published a book of poetry.

The Philosopher Mechanic

The Philosopher Mechanic

Crawford argues that physical labor that offers tangible results—a motorcycle that starts, a plumbing system that doesn’t leak—provides satisfaction, both intellectual and psychic, that office work often lacks.

Couture Construction

Couture Construction

Two alumnae, an urban planner and an artchitect, formed Chromat Garments. They make fashion that borrows heavily from architecture.

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Michael Rasbury is a sound designer, a composer and a professor of drama at UVA, and he co-wrote a play inspired by his son, a musical about a boy with autism named Max.

More Departments

The Kennedys at Virginia

The Kennedys at Virginia

In March 1958, then-Senator John F. Kennedy, his wife, Jackie, and his brothers Robert and Ted attended Law Day at UVA.

Saving Green

Saving Green

During the month of August, it cost $21,769.85 just to cool Newcomb Hall. The University is making eye-opening numbers like these available on its online “Building Dashboard,” which displays energy use in Newcomb Hall.

Terrorism on Trial

Terrorism on Trial

Over the last year, Edward B. MacMahon Jr. (Col ’82) has been working as a defense attorney in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Sharing a Vision

Sharing a Vision

Jennifer Tsai was so moved by the beauty and symbolism of the Rotunda, she knew it would be hard to leave when she graduated

China Connection

China Connection

A collaborative effort is strengthening Chinese connections among UVA alumni, students and officials.

Supersized Ring

Supersized Ring

Astronomers recently found the largest planetary ring in the solar system swirling around Saturn.

Food for Thought

Food for Thought

The bounty of dishes available at the University’s dining halls could easily be mistaken for a gourmet restaurant.