Engagement Pixel Starkle Dream Up. Stephens College

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Jun
9
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Stephens fashion programs earn Top 10 spots

Stephens College’s School of Fashion and Design is in the top 10 programs in the country for fashion marketing, according to a new set of rankings released earlier this week.
The marketing degree is ranked 8th by Fashion Schools, an online resource that aims to provide students with information about fashion and design programs. The company began rating schools last year.
Stephens was also ranked 10th in the Midwest and 33rd nationally for its design degree and 13th in the country for fashion management.

“We know we’re providing our students with an excellent education and lots of real-world experiences in the world of fashion,” Dean Monica McMurry said. “We’re pleased that others recognize our high-quality programs, as well.”
 
Jun
5
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Trip to L.A. opens industry doors for film students


Dinner-tableFor LeeAnn Lowery ’15 the chance to spend a week in Los Angeles wasn’t about sight seeing or even visiting major studios.

“The highlight was meeting alumnae who are actually working in the industry—alumnae who were in the exact spot we’re in and are now successful,” Lowery said.
Lowery and fellow film majors took the trip last month as part of the digital filmmaking program at Stephens. The trip began last year and is now offered to all film students once between their sophomore and junior year or junior and senior year.
As part of the week-long experience, students visited a recording studio and watched a film composer compose a cue for “Grimm,” toured Sunset Boulevard, toured “The Simpsons” writing room and attended a lecture at the Writers Guild Foundation Library.
A brunch with Stephens alumnae living in the area capped off the trip and was “perfect,” said Assistant Professor Steph Borklund, who accompanied the students.
“I really feel that it confirmed the possibility to some of the students that it is possible to move to L.A. if they want to,” she said. “Seeing our alumnae not only succeed in L.A. but also giving the students advice and their information was key.”
Alumnae and students exchanged information, and alumnae offered to help students if they choose to move to L.A. after graduation, she said.

“The Hollywood industry seems a lot less daunting and success there seems a lot more within reach because, not only do I have the advice and encouragement of many successful women, but I also have the beginnings of a relationship with people and especially Stephens alumnae who would be willing to help me along the way,” Livvy Runyon ’16 said. “I really enjoyed hearing their personal stories of how they got where they are, and the advice they gave to us about starting out in our careers and our lives was absolutely invaluable to me. Their words were so inspiring and encouraging, I feel like the things I used to see as impossible are actually a lot more attainable than I thought. They encouraged us that with some hard work, perseverance and a lot of passion, nothing is off limits to us.”

 
Jun
4
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New York-based director overseeing original production at Stephens


The director of a revolutionary theatre company in New York is on campus this week overseeing production of an original play based on the life of a famous female geologist.
Jessica Burr is co-founder of Blessed Unrest, an award-winning experimental physical theatre company that generates original works. Burr’s partner, Matt Opatrny, joined her on campus last week, as well.

Jessica-Burr
Courtesy of Alan Roche


At Stephens, Burr is working with about 20 theatre students to write and create a show featuring the life of Luella Agnes Owen. Owen, who died in 1932, was the first woman to openly explore and write about the caves of Missouri. Despite social restrictions, Owen explored hundreds of caves, publishing “Cave Regions of the Ozarks and Black Hills” in 1898.
The show, “The Beauty of Darkness,” will begin at 7:30 p.m. at Warehouse Theatre. It’s free and open to the public.
Burr and students discovered Owen’s biography while looking for materials on which to base the play.
Rather than a linear biography, “The Beauty of Darkness” will be a journey of interwoven narratives of stories, poetry, original choreography and music that bring our central story clearly into the here and now. Information will come unexpectedly, Burr said, and through all types of mediums.
“We’re essentially all asking the question and letting it be,” she said. “That question is ‘What does it mean to build your own way as a woman in this place?’ It will also celebrate the women on whose shoulders we stand.”
Burr and Opatrny have been working together since 1999 and held their first performance as a company in New York in 2001, just days after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The mood and tenacity following that event has shaped the company since, she said. In addition to productions in New York, Blessed Unrest pursues international partnerships in hopes of breaking down cultural barriers through artistic collaboration.
This is Burr’s first time working at Stephens and visiting Missouri. Although the process has been hectic—she and the crew have two weeks to write, rehearse and produce the show—she said she’s been impressed with Stephens.
“It’s amazing,” she said. “The idea of coming into a place and working with people you’ve never met and to devise a play from scratch in two weeks … it’s in that fine line between very brave and very stupid. But they’ve set the bar so high. They’re focused, have had great training and take care of each other. I’m learning a lot just keeping up with their processes.”

“The Beauty of Darkness” is part of the Summer Theatre Institute at Stephens. Click here for a list of all STI productions. 

 
Jun
4
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Lee students enjoy field trip at President's Home



Children from Lee Expressive Arts Elementary School enjoyed their annual end-of-year field trip at the President’s Home at Stephens College today.

sidewalk-chalkThe school’s more than 300 students took advantage of the property’s layout to spread out and rotate through various activity stations. While older students played Frisbee and competed in cardboard box races—requiring them to roll down the lawn inside a box—younger children ran egg and water races and decorated the sidewalks with chalkboard art.
“We love being Partners in Education with Lee and hosting their field day,” Stephens President Dianne Lynch said. “There are always such great games and activities.”

Having the President’s Home property near the school is “phenomenal,” said Lee Principal Karen Burger.
While the field trip is held annually, the school often uses the property for outdoor physical education classes.
“We have a soccer field which is also used for recess but otherwise we’re a little landlocked,” Burger said. “We’re really grateful to have the opportunity to use this space when the weather is nice.”

The field trip marks the last full day of school and celebrates the end of the school year, which concludes tomorrow.
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Jun
3
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Columbia Transit unveils logo designed by Creative Ink


The City of Columbia today unveiled a new logo for Columbia Transit designed by Creative Ink, the student-run marketing firm at Stephens.


The logo is a colorful wheel-shaped design that conveys a variety of ideas, said Teresa White, a marketing specialist for Columbia Transit.


“The brilliant women at Creative Ink had the idea of making it a wheel without being too obvious about it,” she said. “It incorporates a number of transportation elements, the spokes and wheel and arrows, but also conveys the idea of connecting the community.”


Creative Ink Sponsor Kate Gray, assistant professor of graphic design, joined city leaders at a launch party today on the University of Missouri campus revealing the new look, as well as a new transportation plan.



Sarah Coyen, who will be a senior this fall, was the account executive and will be the executive director of Creative Ink this coming school year. Sara Barnett, also a senior, was the designer and is the incoming creative director for the firm. Students worked based on the idea of conveying a sense of movement, Gray said. 
The City of Columbia and Columbia Transit have been working on an overhaul to the public transportation system for the past year. CoMo Connect, the name of the brand, had a temporary logo, but needed a more professional permanent look, White said.


“The city was very excited to be able to utilize the talents of our local Stephens College students on this project,” Drew Brooks, multi-modal manager, said in a statement. “The Creative Ink program was a perfect fit for our needs and helped us connect to the student population here in Columbia. Rebranding the entire bus line is a huge undertaking for the city, and the students we worked with just blew us away with their innovative ideas and professional attitudes. We couldn’t have done it without them.”

Creative Ink, now in its sixth year, is also working with the city to rebrand the Columbia Regional Airport and has worked with other community clients, including Columbia Public Schools. The firm does not charge for services but rather uses those partnerships to gain real-world experience.
 
Jun
3
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McConnell selected to Capital One Academic All-America® First Team



By Adam Samson/Sports Information Director
TOWSON, Md. – Stephens College softball standout Jessica McConnell was named to the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America® First Team today. 
Selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), McConnell becomes the Stars’ first-ever Academic All-American® in any sport.
She was one of 11 student-athletes to earn first-team honors and is the lone representative for the American Midwest Conference (AMC).
“This honor speaks volumes about Jess’s commitment to excellence on the field and in the classroom,” said Athletics Director Deb Duren. “During her time at Stephens, she has been a tremendous asset and model student-athlete for our program.”
McConnell finished her career as the Stars’ all-time leader in hits (148), doubles (31), triples (13), runs batted in (44), total bases (208) and slugging percentage (.515). As a four-year starter for the softball team, she started all 144 games of her college career.
This season, the Edwardsville, Ill., native was named first-team AMC All-Conference, another first for the Stephens softball program. She was the Stars’ leading hitter with a .394 average while driving in a team-high 17 runs. She also had eight doubles and four triples.
The Edwardsville, Ill., native is a recent graduate of the M.B.A. program at Stephens, where she also finished her undergraduate degree in business and marketing with a 3.94 grade point average.
As a multi-sport athlete, McConnell racked up several academic awards in her time at Stephens. She is a five-time Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athlete and eight-time AMC Academic All-Conference honoree.
“Across the country, there are several student-athletes who perform at an elite level and some who achieve at a high level in the classroom,” Duren added. “But, there are very few who excel at the level that Jess has in both areas.”
To be eligible for Academic All-America® consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.30, have reached sophomore athletic and academic status at their current institution and be nominated by their sports information director.
On May 1, McConnell became eligible for the Academic All-America® team by earning Capital One Academic All-District honors for District 3, which covers the states of Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
 
Jun
2
Date Tail

Brooklyn Nine-Nine star talks career, Stephens roots


Actress and Stephens alumna Stephanie Beatriz has found success in acting on stage and in film and television.

 


With a major role in the Fox hit Brooklyn Nine-Nine, which snagged a Golden Globe for best TV comedy series in January; a role in Short Term 12, which many consider one of the best motion pictures of 2013; and an upcoming role alongside some big-name co-stars, Beatriz has been rightfully deemed a “rising star.”


But she hasn’t forgotten her Stephens roots. For those tuning in to the Tuesday night hit comedy, don’t let her role as tough-talking Detective Rosa Diaz fool you. In real life, Beatriz is developing a reputation for being accessible, friendly and down-to-earth. We see why! The talented celeb was happy to take time out of her busy schedule to talk to us about her success.


Stephens: When we heard “Rosa Diaz” on Brooklyn Nine-Nine being described as tough and smart, we thought: "That sounds like a Stephens woman!"—even though she’s also described as “really scary,” and you don’t seem that way at all.
Beatriz: Actually, I can absolutely relate to her scariness. Do not cross me when it is snack time. Also don't cut me off in traffic.


STEPHENS: The show is obviously resonating with audiences. Congratulations on the Golden Globe win! You were stunning in that blue dress (and we loved the glasses) at the ceremony. Tell us what it was like to be part of such an amazing night—the 360 Glam Cam, being in the audience, being on stage—all of the details!


BEATRIZ: Thank you! It was fun, extremely strange and anxiety producing! We were all so excited to be at the event, and for many of us it was our first awards show. The Red Carpet part was very strange: Because I'm a newcomer and our show is still so new, many photographers and interviewers just had no idea who I was and skipped right over me! I didn't mind at all though and was simply trying to enjoy the moment. Once we finally got inside (from start to finish, the carpet took us about an hour and a half with photos, interviews and slow walking in high heels) and were seated at our table, the real fun began. I loved seeing my favorite actors and flipped when Meryl Streep walked by. The ceremony was so fun and flew by.


Once Andy's (Samberg) win was announced, we were all on cloud nine: he was so surprised! And when our category came up and we were announced the winners, we were so, so joyful. I had my glasses on at that point, so I could see the ceremony and ended up just running on stage with them on. Being on that stage felt so surreal: I was holding on to (co-star) Chelsea Peretti, who was standing next to me, for dear life. I was so, so happy that the work of (writers) Dan Goor and Mike Schur was recognized that evening. The characters and worlds they created swept the comedy categories—Amy Poehler won best actress in a comedy series—and they are so deserving of the recognition. Afterward, we were swept into the backstage area where we were interviewed within an inch of our lives! (By the way, Al Roker is adorable in real life.)


The best part of the day? That's a tie between the actual win and getting ready that morning! Fellow Stephens alum and my best friend [and Stephens alumna] Katie Mellinger is a professional makeup artist, and she flew out from New York City just to do my makeup! 


Stephens: We love hearing that Stephens connection! You played a much different role in Short Term 12, which was an intimate movie. Even though we don't learn much about your character, “Jessica,” we still feel really connected to her in that she's a vital part of this community. What do you credit that to?


Beatriz: The credit goes totally to Destin Cretton, our director/writer. He worked at a group home for years as a day job, and his experiences there shaped the narrative of the film. He encouraged us to get to know the younger actors who populated the group home you see in the film. Between shooting scenes, you could often find many of the younger cast in my dressing room, hanging out and talking about music and making each other laugh. I felt really responsible for them and like a big sister. I hope a bit of that comes through in the film.


 

Stephens: It does! At what age did you decide to pursue acting?
BEATRIZ: Pretty young! In eighth grade, I was in a drama class at school. We had one big production each semester. I wanted the part of the ingénue, but it went to a particularly beautiful and popular girl. My short hair and very crooked teeth won me the part of the evil villain. I was naturally devastated until we started rehearsals, and then I just started FLYING. I was free to explore physical comedy, voices, timing, everything I was too embarrassed or shy to try before.


The day after the production, which the entire school attended, a football player who had never spoken to me before told me how much he liked my brother's performance in the play. SUCCESS! I had made people believe I was someone else! I had also fooled the cool kids into liking me. Granted, they didn't know it was me, but somehow it didn't matter. I was hooked.


Stephens: Which actors inspired you growing up?


Beatriz: Carol Burnett—I loved her show. I adored the entire cast of The Golden Girls. Tom Hanks and Robin Wright—I was devastated/sublimely happy after seeing Forrest Gump as a kid. And the voiceover work of all the actresses who played Disney princesses was a major influence; I am not ashamed to say that.


Stephens: That probably helped when you landed the role of “Cinderella” at Stephens! You enjoyed the spotlight in a number of lead roles during your time here, including “Miss Brodie” in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and “Chava” in Fiddler on the Roof. Do you have any “favorite” roles from your Stephens days—any roles that especially challenged or inspired you?


Beatriz: The Girl in Hot L Baltimore was such a special role in a very special production. [Theatre Professor] Rob Doyen and I spent a ton of time onstage together in that, and I thought it was so wonderful to see him play this sort of meek, shy and sad character. The Warehouse produced Rocky Horror Picture Show as a benefit, and I was lucky enough to be cast in that as well—such an amazing production and so fun. Very challenging for me; I had to dance and sing and stayed onstage the entire time as a sort of Greek chorus. As a freshman, a few classmates and I produced a play called The Real Queen of Hearts Ain't Even Pretty. That was fantastic because we put it up ourselves with support from The Warehouse Theatre and [Assistant Theatre Professor] Dan Schultz, who was an upperclassman at the time. About six of us pulled everything together ourselves. I loved that about Stephens; it celebrates and encourages an environment where you can learn to create your own work, which is so important for artists. So many times things are out of your control, and with that project we made all the decisions.


Stephens: You actually went into theatre after graduation more so than film or television acting. Tell us a little about your professional theatre background.


Beatriz: I moved to New York City immediately after college and was lucky enough to become a part of the union right away though a great company called Theatreworks/USA that produces children's theatre. After that, I tried to do everything I could to get to know people who could get me a job. [Stephens alumna] Becca Ayers introduced me to her agency and through them I booked my first regional theatre job, the role of “Marela” in Anna in the Tropics at the Pittsburgh Public Playhouse. Since then, I've been lucky enough to work at some amazing theatres: Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Yale Rep, The Mark Taper Forum, Hartford Stage, and most recently, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.


Stephens: How difficult was it to make the switch as an actor from the stage to the screen?


Beatriz: I was struggling a bit with the transition, but I took some great classes in L.A. about auditioning. I think it's really important to keep learning, to keep looking for answers. If I'm feeling lost, that's when I know I need to go back to class!


Stephens: You got quite a bit of attention for your role as Sofia Vergara's sister on the ABC hit Modern Family last year. What was it like to work on such a wildly popular series?
Beatriz: Fantastic. The cast was hugely welcoming and extremely professional. I learned a ton just watching how they worked.


 

STEPHENS: We’ll see more of you on the big screen this year. You play “Jill,” the best friend and roommate of the main character in You're Not You, a film with some pretty big names, including Josh Duhamel and Hilary Swank. What was it like working with them and what can audiences expect from that film?
BEATRIZ: Hilary was lovely, extremely kind and very focused. I didn't get to meet Josh, as we were not in any of the same scenes. I'm looking forward to seeing the final version of the film myself! One of my agents (he's a total tough guy) saw it and said it emotionally wrecked him. I think that's a good sign!



 
May
27
Date Tail

Comedy meets combat in 'Slap Schtick' theatre production

By Emma Carter/STI Public Information Director


Summer Theatre Institute students on Friday will present “Slap Schtick,” comedy meets combat.


The show, which begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Warehouse Theatre, will consist of a series of fight vignettes. Some students created original scenes, while others took familiar scenes—everywhere from Bridesmaidsto Shakespeare—and added a physical fight.


Audience members can expect to “ooh” and “ahh” at the convincing fight sequences and laugh at the circumstances from which each fight has sprung.


The performance is directed and choreographed by guest artist John Wilson, a professional director, actor, fight choreographer and teacher. Wilson’s regional credits include American Heartland Theatre, Unicorn Theatre, Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, Denver Center Theatre Company, Ensemble Theatre Company, Denver, Co., and his most recent effort, “Romeo and Juliet,” which was his seventh fight director assignment for the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. 


The show is free and open to the pubic and will run approximately one hour. It is for those ages 12 and up.

The Summer Theatre Institute is an on-campus intensive theatre experience for students between their first and second years. Upcoming shows include:
·   The Blessed Unrest Project

7:30 p.m., Friday, June 6

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed by Jessica Burr and Matt Opatrny

An evening of thrilling, artist-driven magic!


· Women of the West
7:30 p.m., Friday, June 13

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Adapted and Directed by Lamby Hedge

Using authentic diaries and letters of the period, STI will make women of the frontier come alive once more.


·  A Grand Night for Show Music

7:30 p.m., Monday, June 23

Macklanburg Playhouse, 100 Willis Ave.

Directed by Rob Doyen, Musical Direction by Cheryl Nichols and Choreographed by Millie Garvey
A joyous Broadway musical revue.
 
May
27
Date Tail

'Starting with My Voice' to be presented Wednesday and Thursday


"Starting with My Voice," an original musical written by Audra Sergel and Trent Rash, adjunct instructors at Stephens College, will be presented Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Windsor Auditorium on the Stephens campus. Tickets are $10. Click for ticket information or more on the show.


The music is provided by Sergel, who teaches voice and piano and provides accompaniment at Stephens, and the book is written by Rash, who gives private voice lessons at Stephens, teaches Performance Techniques and performs in theatre productions.


"Starting with My Voice"—accepted into the 2014 Chicago Musical Theater Festival as one of just eight musicals out of 40 submissions selected to be part of the event—is the musical journey of five interconnected souls, that while living their human, everyday, complicated lives are learning simple, spiritual lessons. The songs lead the audience to peek into these lessons in grief, love, humor, and self-acceptance, and make for a show that is funny, real, from the heart and honest. It is rated PG-13 for mild language and adult themes.


Sergel’s music was originally composed for a revue, “Now is the Time,” which debuted at The Bridge in Columbia last fall. Hearing all of the pieces together at that event, Sergel said, made her realize she had something special—a collection of songs with a unifying theme.

“They are all about making a decision, a choice moment,” she said. “They’re individual stories about being who we are and how we decide to advocate for change.”

Sergel reached out to Rash to help write the book and direct the production, and professional actors have since joined the cast.


Although outside of the realm of their teaching duties, Sergel and Rash agree their musical could benefit students. The musical could be performed in the future using students in the cast, Rash said. On a broader level, it shows how making one decision—in this case submitting the music to the festival—can have significant results.

“As an artist, when you feed yourself, you share,” Sergel said. “It shows students you have to stay open. Stephens women are courageous, they put themselves out there, and that’s contagious. This is about taking the next step and being bold.”

The next step for “Starting with My Voice” will be showings at The Den Theatre in Chicago and for the Hannibal Arts Council next month.

 
May
24
Date Tail

Internationally known guest artists work with dancers at Stephens Summer Dance

 

Dance-Studio-1
Students practice movements in the summer dance intensive.

Students enrolled in the Stephens Summer Dance intensive are studying the art of Jump Rhythm and learning contemporary modern  dance from two internationally respected guest artists.

Brandi Coleman is the associate artistic director of Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, a Chicago-based dance company that celebrates the communal core of jazz performance

dancing, singing and story-telling in rhythmically syncopated conversations. At Stephens, she’s teaching the art form to students. 
Hettie Barnhill is a Broadway entertainer who last performed in the production of Spider-Man. She’s teaching contemporary movements inspired by some of her Broadway performances.
Both artists are emphasizing high-energy movements that are relaxed and controlled. Movements are sharp with an emphasis on the transitions between poses. 

Dance-Studio-2
Coleman urges students to focus their eyes while moving.

“The styles work together,” Coleman said. “They’re different but complementary.”  Dance students are being challenged, but Coleman and Barnhill agreed that once they get out of their comfort zones, they’re “willing to go for it.” That includes being willing to “scat," get into character and take other risks.
Barnhill and Coleman are choreographing dances that students will perform at the annual Summer Dance Concert. The concert, which is open to the public, will be held at 7:30 p.m. June 27-28 at Macklanburg Playhouse.
Coleman is also an adjunct lecturer at Northwestern University. In 2007, she won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Performance On-Camera in the PBS documentary Jazz Rhythm Jazz Project: Getting There. She is currently pursuing her M.F.A. in Dance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Dance-Studio-3
Barnhill leads warm-up exercises before her class.

Barnhill’s Broadway production ended in January. She’s using the break between shows to not only serve as a resident artist at Stephens but also work with A Long Walk Home, Inc., a non-profit organization that uses art therapy and performing arts to educate the public about healing from trauma. She’s been honored twice as a Rising Star by the Young & Powerful for Obama Group and in 2011 was named NAACP “Top 21 Leaders 40 and Under” in the fields of arts and culture.
Stephens Summer Dance is part of the College's B.F.A. in Dance program that allows students to earn their degree in three years and two summers. The program is split into two sessions, allowing high school students to participate, as well.
During the second session, guest artists include Francisco Graciano, a member of the Ben Munisteri Dance Company, Cortez & Co. Contemporary/Ballet and Pascal Rioult Dance Theatre and the Paul Taylor Dance Company in New York City; Russell Sultzbach, director of Ballet South; and Morgan Hulen, a member of the world-renowned MOMIX dance company.

 
May
22
Date Tail

SCCS enjoys Preschool of the Year party on last day

baloon-artist
A balloon artist creates a rabbit for an SCCS student.

Stephens College Children’s School is celebrating the last day of school today with a party—complete with prizes the school won late last year when SCCS was named Preschool of the Year in a Parent’s Pick contest sponsored by Hulafrog of Columbia.

 

 

 



The honor came with rental of a bounce house, the highlight of this afternoon’s event, as well as a balloon artist, who was on hand creating bunnies, swords and other creatures from colorful balloons.
Kona Ice also pulled its frozen treats onto the school playground, letting parents and children keep cool in between activities.
Hulafrog is a website that provides information on kid-friendly businesses and events. Last year, the company asked parents to name the top preschool in town.
“We were thrilled” to be selected, said Leslie Willey, director and Dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies at Stephens. “We know we provide an excellent educational experience, but we also know we are in good company.”
Stephens College Children’s School offers preschool through fifth grade.

 
May
21
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Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction now 100% online


Teachers and other education professionals seeking to complete a master’s degree can now do so entirely online through Stephens College.


Effective immediately, the College’s Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is a 14-month, 100% online program. That’s a switch from its predecessor, which required students to spend a week on campus two consecutive summers.


“We know a lot of people want to teach summer school or have summer travel plans,” said Dr. Leslie Willey, director of the M.Ed. program and dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies. “By eliminating the on-campus week in June, this opens the door for more people to take advantage of our program.”


The M.Ed. allows working professionals to complete assignments, group projects and presentations through multi-media platforms online. In many cases, students can apply what they’re learning in class to their own homerooms and schools.


“It’s designed for full-time teachers,” Willey said. “We stay current with curriculum trends, so it’s really relevant to a teacher’s life. We want them to adapt assignments and projects to use in their classrooms and to share best practices with one another.” 

 
May
20
Date Tail

Summer Theatre Institute presents collection of tales based on Sandburg stories


By Emma Carter/STI Public Information Director
Stephens College theatre students on Friday will present “A Dozen Rootabagas,” a collection of tales based on stories by Carl Sandburg.


The play—adapted by Kip Niven, father of Summer Theatre Institute student Maggie Niven—is a string of original folk tales, each one building off the one prior to it. Audience members can expect to be charmed by endearing, quirky characters and Sandburg’s unique language and vivid imagery.


Tales include “The Story of Blixie Bimber and the Power of the Gold Buckskin Whincher,” “How They Bring Back the Village of Cream Puffs When the Wind Blows it Away,” and “How Gimme the Ax Found Out About the Zigzag Railroad and Who Made it Zigzag.”


The play begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Warehouse Theatre and is free and open to the public. It’s directed by Carol Estey, a Broadway veteran and artistic director of dance at Stephens.


The Summer Theatre Institute is an on-campus intensive theatre experience for students between their first and second years. Upcoming shows include:


·  Slap Shtick!

7:30 p.m., Friday, May 30

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed/Choreographed by John Wilson

A comic look at what happens when a well-intentioned master class in fight choreography goes awry.


·   The Blessed Unrest Project

7:30 p.m., Friday, June 6

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed by Jessica Burr and Matt Opatrny

An evening of thrilling, artist-driven magic!


· Women of the West
7:30 p.m., Friday, June 13

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Adapted and Directed by Lamby Hedge

Using authentic diaries and letters of the period, STI will make women of the frontier come alive once more.


·  A Grand Night for Show Music

7:30 p.m., Monday, June 23

Macklanburg Playhouse, 100 Willis Ave.

Directed by Rob Doyen, Musical Direction by Cheryl Nichols and Choreographed by Millie Garvey
A joyous Broadway musical revue.

 
May
20
Date Tail

The Collections: A video recap

The 70th annual student designer fashion show, The Collections, was held April 26 on campus. Watch a recap below. See photos of the winning designs here.


 
May
16
Date Tail

Brown encourages fellow graduates to 'dream up'

Patrika Brown inspired her fellow graduates during Stephens' May Commencement ceremony last weekend, encouraging them to not only be bold but also to be humble.


“The hardest thing about becoming a successful woman is to remember where you came from,” she told undergraduates. “No matter how high a tree climbs, its roots remain deep in the soil.”

Brown was the senior recipient of the 2014 Alumnae Association Board Scholarship, which earned her the privilege of addressing the senior class, as well as $250. Recipients are chosen based on academic excellence and contributions to campus life.

Brown earned a Bachelor of Science in Education and is now heading to Mississippi to complete training for Teach for America. After that, she’ll be assigned to teach at an urban school.

It’s not exactly the plan Brown had when she began her studies at Stephens four years ago.
Brown—the daughter of Amy Tatum Robinson ’95—had a 10-year plan that included becoming a teacher in a suburban district in Memphis.

But last semester, everything changed. Something inside her told her to look into Teach for America, a non-profit organization that enlists high-achieving college graduates to teach in low-income communities.

She applied on a whim, got an interview and was selected for the program.


“I ended my fairy tale thinking and completely changed my plans,” she said.

Brown credits a few experiences for contributing to her decision. She participated in a World Café event sponsored by Columbia Public Schools that enlisted the public to talk about closing the achievement gap between student groups. She also taught at a local elementary school, where she was especially drawn to helping at-risk children.

She’s already begun training on “no-nonsense nurturing,” and “I love what I’m learning,” she said.

At Commencement, she challenged graduates to show the world how bold they are.


“We must give back to our communities both mentally and physically,” she said. “But most of all we must bust through society’s limitations and dream up.”  

 
May
15
Date Tail

Coleman hopes to digitize Stephens art collection

The First Gentleman of Stephens College is continuing efforts to centralize, preserve and archive the College’s art collection—and he now has eyes on digitizing the works.
Philip Coleman—husband of President Dianne Lynch—has recruited recent Stephens graduate Chloe Willett to help him log, photograph and share the pieces with the public through an online database using the same software that currently allows online visitors to view pieces from the Stephens College Costume Museum & Research Library. Willett worked for the museum and research library as part of her senior capstone project.
Coleman has been working to identify and centralize artwork at Stephens since 2010. He gave an update of that work at the Alumnae Group of Mid-Missouri’s annual luncheon at the President’s Home today, where visitors could view some of the displayed works.
Roughly half of the 600 individual works of arts on the Stephens campus are flat pieces such as prints, lithographs and drawings. Stephens also has several bronze sculptures, including Larry Young’s bronze “Venus” sculpture displayed at Historic Senior Hall. The College also has many non-European items, including porcelain pieces from China and cultural artifacts from New Guinea.

Coleman mostly has spent his energies on the flat pieces at greatest risk of deterioration—he’s been able to stabilize and properly store hundreds of prints and drawings.
The Stephens collection includes some important works such as a portrait of Pablo Picasso by Salvador Dali, Picasso’s “Faun With Branches” and works by Miró, Ernst, Bingham and Rouault.
“We have some well-known people,” he said. “They are valuable in what they provide the campus aesthetically.”
He praised Lynch for her commitment to preserving artwork, noting that in leaner years, Stephens divested some of the works. That’s not uncommon—Coleman cited several colleges and universities in the past few years that have sold entire collections in order to redirect funding.
“We believe the collection aligns with our mission to help students appreciate art,” he said. “It’s a valuable collection, and we believe it contributes to the legacy of Stephens.”
 
May
14
Date Tail

Marcum designs 2014 Art in the Park materials

Recent Stephens graduate Michelle Marcum designed the artwork for this year’s Art in the Park, an annual art festival hosted by the Columbia Art League.


Art in the Park is June 7-8 at Stephens Lake Park and will feature ceramics, fibers, jewelry, paintings, prints, photography, sculptures and other works from 110 artists.


Each year, the league solicits designs for the event from Assistant Professor Kate Gray’s graphic design students. Diana Moxon, executive director of CAL, critiques them before narrowing down the finalists. 
The CAL Board of Directors makes the final decision.


Marcum’s design was “amazing,” Moxon said. It combines elements of art—a pallet and paintbrushes—with the trees, birds and nature that Art in the Park attendees will enjoy.


Marcum said she appreciated working with community clients during her time as a graphic design student and hopes to continue to volunteer her talents even after she begins her graphic design job in June.

Gray’s students this year also worked with Columbia Regional Airport, Columbia Transit and Columbia Public Schools.

 
May
14
Date Tail

STI schedule announced

Stephens College theatre students will work alongside faculty and guest artists this summer to produce five public performances as part of the annual Summer Theatre Institute.



STI teaches student actors basic stage techniques. Guest artists this year include John Wilson, a professional director, actor, fight choreographer and teacher; Jessica Burr and Matt Opatmy, a founding company member of the New York City-based acting company, Blessed Unrest; and Millie Garvey, a St. Louis-based director and choreographer.


All shows are free and open to the public. Following is a schedule of STI performances:


·  A Dozen Rootabagas – a children’s theatre performance

7:30 p.m., Friday, May 23

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed by Carol Estey

For young audiences, this delightful tale is adapted by professional actor/director/playwright Kip Niven, (from the writings of famed author and poet Carl Sandburg).


·  Slap Shtick! – comedy meets combat

7:30 p.m., Friday, May 30

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed/Choreographed by John Wilson

A comic look at what happens when a well-intentioned master class in fight choreography goes awry.


·   The Blessed Unrest Project – devised theatre magic   

7:30 p.m., Friday, June 6

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Directed by Jessica Burr and Matt Opatrny

An evening of thrilling, artist-driven magic!


· Women of the West – true tales of frontier women   

7:30 p.m., Friday, June 13

Warehouse Theatre, 104 Willis Ave.

Adapted and Directed by Lamby Hedge

Using authentic diaries and letters of the period, STI will make women of the frontier come alive once more.


·  A Grand Night for Show Music – a sparkling musical theatre revue

7:30 p.m., Monday, June 23

Macklanburg Playhouse, 100 Willis Ave.

Directed by Rob Doyen, Musical Direction by Cheryl Nichols and Choreographed by Millie Garvey


A joyous Broadway musical revue.

 
May
12
Date Tail

Stephens women put personal touches on graduation garb

From messages such as “hire me” to decorative flowers to expressing “thanks” for a scholarship, Stephens College graduates Saturday used their mortarboards to express their thoughts and show off their creative side at Commencement.

Decorating mortarboards has become a Stephens tradition that has risen in popularity over the years. Although every year numerous students show up with blinged-out caps, almost every graduate put her own touch on traditional graduation garb at this year’s undergraduate Commencement, held at Missouri Theatre.
Angel Mendez’s mortarboard said “thank you bill gates” in recognition of the Gates Millennium Scholars program that four years ago awarded her a full-ride scholarship to the school of her choice.
Just before Commencement, she took to social media to further express her gratitude for having the chance to attend one of the best schools “in women’s history. I’m still in disbelief to this day but I know I must go on and give back to the scholarship that gave me everything.”

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Effie Frank and Michelle Marcum

Several graduates used their major as inspiration for their designs. Michelle Marcum, who earned a bachelor’s in graphic design, decorated her cap in a colorful palette, adding her signature bird to give it her own personal brand. Kelsea Whitten, an education major, used crayons to create a border for her cap. And Holly Hmielewski, a fashion design major, turned her mortarboard into a statement piece complete with bright flowers, jewels and a netted veil.
Members of The Ten—those students chosen to personify each of Stephens’ Ten Ideals—also used their mortarboards to recognize that honor, from specifying which Ideal they represented to just celebrating the group at large.

 

 

 

 



“The mortarboards were pretty amazing this year,” President Dianne Lynch said. “They were so fitting for the creative, talented, amazing group of graduates we had this year.”

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Holly Hmielewski's fashion-themed cap.
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The Ten show off their decorative mortarboards.


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May
9
Date Tail

Non-traditional Stephens graduates among growing group of adult learners

Jennifer Hrebar-Ihler will graduate from Stephens College with bachelor’s degrees in psychology and legal studies tomorrow—just a month shy of her 50th birthday.
While she knows she pushes the bounds of “non-traditional” at Stephens—her daughters are older than most of her classmates—she is among a growing group of adult students who are changing the face of college campuses across the country.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, only 15 percent of those attending college in the country in 2011 were what most consider “traditional” college students—18- to 22-year-olds living on campus at four-year institutions.
Five graduates who will walk across the stage at Stephens’ May Commencement tomorrow are “non-traditional.” Most agree they came to Stephens for the programs—and because they were ready to pursue their passions.

Hrebar-Ihler enjoyed a successful career in interior design before relocating from Alaska to Columbia for a fresh start. When the economy crashed in 2008, she found herself without a job but also the opportunity to reconsider her priorities.
“I decided to do something different—to pursue a career where I could feel like I was making a difference,” she said.
After exploring the counseling programs in the area, she chose Stephens because of the personal attention.
“I liked the idea of being more than just a number,” she said.
To her surprise, that translated into her social life, as well. This year, she served as senior class president.
“I was surprised that I forged connections with these women,” she said. “I was very happy that women younger than my daughters would consider me a friend.”

Michelle-and-her-children
Michelle Marcum and her children.

Michelle Marcum was also active on campus even as she balanced being a mother of two off campus.

A graphic design major, Marcum was on the staff of Creative Ink, the student-run marketing firm, and designed this year’s cover of Harbinger, the literary magazine.
Marcum delayed going to college after having children. While she found success in the workforce—easily moving up the ranks to manager at factories and restaurants—she decided in her mid-20s to pursue her passion for art.

After earning a certificate and some college credits elsewhere, she transferred to Stephens.
“Stephens offered the experience and connections you need to work in graphic design,” she said.Experiencing college elsewhere, she said, gives her a greater appreciation of her experiences at Stephens.
“Students at other schools do fine, but here, students excel,” she said. “We push each other, and there’s nothing that gets in the way.”
In June, Marcum will begin her job as a graphic designer at a local photography company.
Tera Eckerle is moving to Los Angeles after graduating in hopes of fulfilling her dream of being an actor. She was a financially independent mom when she decided to attend Stephens.
“I was bar tending and waitressing, but I didn’t want that to be my path,” she said. “I wanted to do something else.”

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Tera Eckerle and her son

When she had her second child in 2012, Eckerle left school, but she was determined to come back and complete the program.
“The faculty said ‘you can do this,’” she said. “They helped me tremendously.”
In addition to a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre, Eckerle also is minoring in business and dance. 
Through alumnae connections in L.A., Eckerle plans to find work and relocate her family to California.
As for Hrebar-Ihler, she’s not quite finished with her studies and is now preparing for a master’s program.
“People ask me, ‘Why would you go back to school this late in the game? Is it worth it?’” she said. “It’s a personal decision everyone has to calculate, but I couldn’t see myself working in the same business anymore. To me it was worth it to gain invaluable new skills. I’ve learned so much, I think the next 20 years will be much more satisfying. The best way to stay young is to keep pushing yourself. 
“And studying alongside young women in their late teens and 20-somethings keeps you young, too. That’s a nice side benefit.” 

 
May
8
Date Tail

Students complete R.A.D. courses at Stephens


Last night, 12 Stephens College students and two female security officers completed the final phase of the R.A.D. (Rape Aggression Defense) course offered on campus this semester.
The final exercise put participants in realistic scenarios through role playing, testing their response and reactions.
“It was intense,” said Tony Coleman, director of security. “Some of the students reported feeling scared, but that’s good. It allowed them to experience the real feelings associated with a dangerous situation without actually being in danger.”
Coleman and Security Officer Tasha Williams served as instructors of the eight-week course after completing their own training to earn nationally recognized R.A.D. Instructors Certification.
The program is designed to teach women to depend on themselves for protection. R.A.D. courses educate women in basic confrontational principles such as understanding reaction time, risk awareness and avoidance techniques. 
“We had some fairly timid young women at the beginning of this program, and they’re now saying they feel more confident,” Coleman said. “This program is a perfect fit for Stephens—it goes hand-in-hand with our mission of empowering young women in all aspects of their lives.”
Coleman will offer four sections of the eight-week course in the fall semester, offering both morning and evening sessions.
 
May
7
Date Tail

Junior education majors show off teaching lessons

Junior education majors yesterday showed off the lesson plans, activities and assignments they used during their two weeks of teaching preschool and elementary classes at the Stephens College Children’s School.
The Junior Showcase allowed the students to explain to their instructors—as well as to family members and friends who stopped by—how they taught basic concepts through creative, interactive lessons.

Megan McQuillen based her lessons on the idea of inventions. She required her elementary-aged children to discover who invented the items they use in their daily lives, from pencils to sinks.

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Karlie Gore and Megan Dascyznski

One highlight was teaching students about the Wright brothers, McQuillen said. 
After learning about the invention of the airplane, students had a chance to blueprint their own design for an airplane—requiring math and simple geometry—and make a variety of paper airplane styles to see which traveled farther.
Finally, students had a chance to create their own inventions. Many students opted to build robots that would assist with daily chores, including homework. One student turned a pizza box into a working pinball machine.
Karlie Gore and Megan Dasczynski worked in the preschool during the junior teaching clusters and based their studies on the concept of jobs. Students learned about a variety of careers and even had a chance to test one out when they built and ran a play post office.
“It was interesting to see how they changed their minds” about what they want to do when they grow up, Dasczynski said. “It was great to see that they understand they have so many possibilities.”
“And they know they don’t have to choose something now,” Gore added.
This year’s junior cluster projects were especially creative, said Dr. Leslie Willey, dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies.

“I was really impressed with all of them,” she said. “We have some very talented young teachers at Stephens.”  

 
May
5
Date Tail

Junior reflects on internship at Missouri State Capitol

By Amber Surdam/Stephens College senior
Stephens junior Emily Marchant admits she never thought politicians had much of a sense of humor, but her internship this semester revealed the truth—politicians aren’t the rigid people she thought they were.


In fact, Rep. Jeff Pogue, R-Salem, and Rep. Randy Pike, R-Adrian, are laid-back and friendly, said Marchant, who is interning in their office at the Missouri House of Representatives in Jefferson City this semester.


“My first day at the capitol shocked me,” she said. “I expected to be in a stern setting, but I found the representatives’ office to be a comfortable environment in which to work.”


Tomorrow is Marchant’s last day of her internship, which she began in January after securing it through the career services office at Stephens. Her job consists of answering phones, writing grant letters and speaking with citizens from multiple districts. Hearing about people’s concerns and helping them with their situations has been eye opening, she said.


“I see now how important representatives are to a community,” Marchant said.


A native of Oregon, Marchant found Stephens through a visit from an admissions counselor. She wanted to attend a liberal arts college, but found that ones near her were out of her price range. 
At Stephens, she’s worked on Stephens Life, the student-run magazine; served on the staff of Creative Ink, the student-run marketing firm; and this year was co-editor of Harbinger, the award-winning literary journal.


She is graduating in December with a degree in integrated media, which she hopes to use to return to the capitol as a legislative assistant.


“I never realized I’d want to be a legislative assistant,” she said. “I didn’t consider it going in, but I really enjoy the work and the environment.”

 
May
5
Date Tail

Commencement ceremonies to be held this weekend

Stephens College President Dianne Lynch will confer 119 bachelor’s degrees, 41 master’s degrees and three post-baccalaureate certificates during two Commencement ceremonies this weekend.
The undergraduate ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday at Missouri Theatre in downtown Columbia. In lieu of a speaker, Lynch will present a video tribute to the graduating class featuring memories and thoughts from graduates and faculty.
“The video is really a highlight of the ceremony,” said Dr. Annette Digby, vice president of academic affairs. “We decided a few years ago that the best way to celebrate our graduates was to let them hear from one another and from the professors who shaped their education here at Stephens. Attendees can expect lots of laughs and, perhaps, a few tears.”
Patrika Brown of Columbia is the class speaker, and Jennifer Hrebar-Ihler, president of the senior class, will also share some remarks.
Melody Parry, an instructor in the Master in Strategic Leadership program, will deliver the keynote speech at the graduate ceremony, which begins at 6 p.m. on Friday in the Kimball Ballroom of Lela Raney Wood Hall. 
 
May
2
Date Tail

McConnell named to Capital One Academic All-District Team

By Adam Samson/Sports Information Director

Stephens College student-athlete Jessica McConnell has been named to the 2014 Capital One Academic All-District® Softball Team, announced by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) on Thursday.
McConnell was one of 48 athletes named to the College Division Academic All-District® Teams, which is comprised of NAIA, Canadian and two-year schools.

As a first-team honoree for District 3, McConnell will be placed on the Capital One Academic All-America® Team ballot, where first-, second- and third-team All-America honorees will be selected later this month.

She is the first Stephens student-athlete to garner Academic All-District honors since the softball trio of Ashton Mixer, Emily Park and Andie Young in 2012.

A four-year starter for the Stars’ softball program, McConnell made an impressive 144 career starts in 144 appearances. She finished her career as the school’s all-time leader in hits, doubles, triples, RBIs, total bases and slugging percentage.

As a multi-sport athlete, McConnell has racked up several awards in her time at Stephens. She is a four-time Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athlete, seven-time AMC Academic All-Conference honoree and earned 2010 AMC All-Conference Honorable Mention.

This season, she ranked among leaders in the American Midwest Conference (AMC) in several categories and ranked in the top 50 nationally (NAIA) in triples and assists/game.

At Stephens, McConnell, an Edwardsville, Ill. native, has already received her bachelor’s degree in business & marketing and will soon have her Master of Business Administration later this May. 
 
May
1
Date Tail

Graduating senior selected to participate in Disney College Program


Senior Jessica Morgan has been selected a second time to participate in the Disney College Program, a paid internship program that will let the technical theatre major get more experience in the world of entertainment before applying for a permanent position.


After Commencement next weekend, Morgan will head to Disney in Orlando, where she will take theatre courses and rotate through recreational roles, working at stations such as lifeguarding and boat rentals. 
When she completes the internship in January, she hopes to apply for a position as a production assistant in the theatre program there.


Morgan originally came to Stephens to pursue acting but discovered that she was really a star behind the scenes.


“I started volunteering in the shop and turned out to be really good at it,” she said. “I went on to be a technical director at the [student-run] Warehouse Theatre my freshman year. That really helped me gain leadership experience. I fell in love with it.”


Morgan participated in Disney College—which is “extremely competitive,” according to the program’s website—once before working on the merchandising side.

“It’s a lot of fun,” she said. “I enjoyed it so much, I had to go back.”

 
May
1
Date Tail

Psychology students present results of mindfulness, texting studies


Guided mindfulness can decrease anxiety and dysfunctional thoughts, senior Erica Bonnot discovered while researching the effects of purposefully clearing your head.
And for those who tend to operate on “auto pilot,” guided mindfulness such as yoga or meditation can have even greater effects.
Those were some of the conclusion she drew from her senior capstone, “The Effects of a Guided Mindfulness Intervention on Students’ Perceived Stress.” She, along with senior Jennifer Hrebar-Ihler, presented her capstone project Tuesday in Dudley Hall.
For her study, Bonnot worked with Stephens faculty to identify students who were about to take an exam or who had an upcoming performance of some sort. She gave them each a survey gauging their anticipatory stress levels. She then gave one group a five-minute Guided Mindfulness Intervention session from the University of California-Los Angeles, asking a separate control group to sit in silence for five minutes. Both took the survey again to determine whether stress levels had changed.
As she hypothesized, the experimental group experienced a drop in stress and an increase in positive attitude, while the control group experienced a slight increase in stress and anxiety.
“If five minutes can make a difference, what about 10 minutes or 45 minutes every day?” Bonnot challenged.

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Jennnifer Hrebar-Ihler discusses texting as part of her capstone project.


For her capstone, Hrebar-Ihler studied whether increased use of text messaging negatively impacts face-to-face communication. After all, those who send and receive texts don’t get the verbal cues and body language that signal whether someone is being sincere.
To her surprise, Hrebar-Ihler discovered that teens and young people who reported heavy text usage showed no measurable differences in emotional intelligence than those who text less. As for older subjects in her study, she actually discovered a positive correlation between high text usage and emotional intelligence.
Hrebar-Ihler acknowledged that her study might have been flawed because it was based on self-reported surveys, but other studies have found similar results. She concluded that those who already have emotional intelligence and strong communication skills would use whatever form of communication is available to them, including text messaging.

Both Bonnot and Hrebar-Ihler said there’s more work to be done in both research areas and outlined some possible next steps for future studies.

 
Apr
30
Date Tail

Reunion weekend celebrates Stephens spirit, friendships


Alumnae returned to the Stephens College campus this past weekend for Celebrate Stephens, the annual reunion weekend packed with events, friendships and memories.
“Everyone really enjoyed being back on campus and connecting with friends,” said Meichele Foster, vice president for institutional advancement and initiatives. “That’s what it’s all about. They come back here—back home, so to speak—to connect with their friends, and our role is to create opportunities for that to happen.”

The event attracted about 150 visitors from across the country, including a few from the Class of 1954 who were celebrating their 60th reunion. Marguerite “Peggy” Saville Leiter was the oldest alumna, having graduated from Stephens in 1949.

Celebrate Stephens events included an Alumnae Association Board’s Leadership Conference, held Thursday and Friday; a Welcome Party and Crossing the Bridge Ceremony, which allowed alumnae to welcome graduating seniors into the alumnae community; a Happy Hour at the President’s Home; and the President’s State of the College Address.
A Performing Arts Cabaret and Alumnae Bistro was a highlight of the weekend, Foster said.

“The bistro was a wonderful way to showcase all of our extremely talented alumnae and students,” Foster said. “We enjoyed singing, dancing and recognizing some of our special alumnae and friends.”

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Helen Lewis Moore '77 performs at the bistro.

Virginia “Ginny” Hawley McSwain from the Class of 1973 was recognized with the Alumnae Achievement Award, the highest honor bestowed on alumnae. McSwain is a successful voice director and actor. 
Teresa Peacher Maledy from the Class of 1978, president and CEO of Commerce Bank in Columbia, received the Jean Clinton Roeschlaub ’44 Alumnae Service Award, in part, for her service to the Board of Trustees.
Alumnae also attended campus events throughout the weekend, including the Senior Capstone and Portfolio event showcasing graphic design and marketing students’ works; the New Works dance concert; and The Collections, the student-designer fashion show.
But without question, Foster said, Celebrate Stephens was about celebrating the Stephens spirit.
“The ties that bind Stephens alumnae are very unique,” she said. “They’re amazing women—absolutely amazing—and we loved hearing the stories they shared and about the accomplishments they’ve made since leaving Stephens. I’m so happy they choose to come back.”
View more photos from Celebrate Stephens here.  

 
Apr
29
Date Tail

Innovative, avant-garde designs emerge as top runway trends


New engineered, custom, fabric design, innovative design lines and avant-garde fashions emerged as the top runway trends featured Saturday at the 70th annual Stephens College fashion show.
Called The Collections, the event showcased the best weekend wear, career wear, swimwear and dresses, all designed and made by students in the School of Fashion and Design. Each garment was judged and chosen by a Jury of Selection comprised of industry professionals from the likes of California, New Mexico and Italy.
“The Collections did not disappoint,” Dean Monica McMurry said. “We were thrilled with the turnout and thrilled with audience members’ reactions. This was, perhaps, one of our best shows yet.”

Senior Effie Frank took home the Best Collection, as well as the Best Tailored Design and Award for Outstanding Surface Design. Her collection, "The Grammar of Ornament," featured a leaf print sheath dress with hand-dyed bands; a one-piece knotted swimsuit with an applique hem short; a two-piece floral swim suit; and a floral romper and a dress with engineered pleats and hand-dyed panels. The latter won the most points during jury, earning Frank the coveted Best of Jury Award.
Senior Holly Hmielewski also dazzled audiences with her collection, "Bioluminescence,  which included a long sleeve one-piece blue swimsuit with cutouts; a short, fitted dress with side peplum detailing; a black and blue jumpsuit with side peplums and cutout details;  and a mermaid fit gown with side peplum and fiber optic fabric details. The collection earned the Alumnae Choice Award and the Stargazer: Most Avant-Garde Award.

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Kelly Ferguson models Hmielewski's black and blue jumpsuit.

Hmielewski also presented her Dallas collection, which debuted at Fashion Group International’s Night of the Stars event in Dallas last semester. The collection, which was not part of the judging, featured fringe and monarch-inspired swimsuits and dresses—garments well received by the audience.

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Garments from Holly Hmielewski's Dallas collection.

Kali Pewitt and Taylor Barber received top honors from the event, as well, receiving Awards for Outstanding Performance as a Model, winning Jurors’ Choice and Students’ Choice, respectively.

Here is a list of all of the awards from the show:

Outstanding Fashion Design Freshman Student: Kathryn SingerOutstanding Fashion Design Sophomore Student: Brittany BellOutstanding Fashion Design Junior Student: Logan BlaggOutstanding Fashion Design Senior Student: Breosha WilliamsAward for Outstanding Surface Design: Steffanie FrankBest of Jury Awards:(highest score in each category)Best Childrenswear – Sonja TabbBest Patternmaking Dress – Brittany BellBest Swimwear – Alayna NietersBest Weekend Wear – Audrah DavidsonBest Career Wear – Logan BlaggBest Tailored Design – Steffanie FrankOutstanding Workmanship – Ariana JaimeOverall Technical Excellence – Kayla GibsonAlumnae Choice Award: Holly HmielewskiStargazer: Most Avant-Garde Award: Holly HmielewskiMost Marketable Award: Breosha Williams

 
Apr
29
Date Tail

Equestrian students host, participate in Sho-Me Horse Circuit show Saturday


The Stephens College Equestrian Center hosted the Sho-Me Horse Circuit Horse Show this past weekend, attracting both Stephens students and outside riders.
It was the first show of the season for the Sho-Me Horse Circuit, the governing body of as many as 18 shows a year.
Stephens had 16 horses compete in addition to 30 horses brought in from the public, said instructor Karen Craighead, whose Equestrian Events Management class hosted the event.
“That blend of school horses and outside horses made for a nice show,” she said.

Students had the opportunity to not only compete but also plan and execute the event, said Michelle Humbert, a junior in the class.
“This event combines saddleseat and western, which typically each have huge shows in the area,” she said. “It’s unusual to have them both in one show.”

That allowed each discipline to see and interact with the other, she added.
Junior Hayley Upton typically competes as a huntseat rider, snagging the championship in her division at the Irish Fox Show in St. Louis earlier this semester. On Saturday, she took 2nd place in Class 2 American Saddlebred Horse Driving. Jessica Rauls took 1st place.

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Cordy Brannan with Sons First Glance


Following is a complete list of Stephens students who placed at the show.
Open NoviceWestern Pleasure:
1st- Radical Rendezvous and Jessica Rauls
Green Western Pleasure:
1st MM’s Mr Joe and Emily Payne
Adult Horsemanship:
2nd Nevertoomuchchocolate and Megan Hasemann
Novice Walk/Trot Horsmanship
1st Alexis Hudson and Legends Diamond Chip
2nd Cheyenne Jones and Kids Double Joe
Egg & Spoon:
2nd Radical Rendezvous and Jessica Rauls
Walk/Trot Pleasure ages 14-18
1st Sheiks Aritfacts and Marge Sheldon
Novice Walk/Trot Pleasure
1st Legends Diamond Chip and Alexis Hudson
2nd Cheyenne Jones and Kids Double Joe
3rd Radical Rendezvous and Jessica Rauls
5th  Nevertoomuchchocolate and Rachel Cummings
6th MM’s Mr Joe and Emily Payne
 Novice Walk/Trot Trail
1st  Nevertoomuchchocolate and Megan Hasemann
2nd Docs Music Dancer and Julia Abegg
3rd  MM Mr Joe and Erin Cumming
4th Sheiks Artifacts and Marge Sheldon
5th  Charmed By Chance and Ashley Duke
Bareback Pleasure
2nd  Nevertoomuchchocolate and Megan Hasemann’
3rd  Teddy and Kerry Miller
4th Kids Double Joe and Cheyenne Jones
5-Gaited
1st Magellen and Chanielle McLaren
2nd  Cool Down Papa and DeLynn Uttech
Equitation:
1st Adrienne Markle and The Top Shelf
2nd  Sir Elegance and Cara Wolf
3rd  Son’s First Glance and Rachel Cummings
4th Showboat’s Gambler and Jocelle Davaust
3 Gaited/Park
1st Count and Ashley Duke
2nd Undalata’s Health Nut and Taylor Bernstein
3rd  Uptown New Yorker and Erin Cumming
English Pleasure:
1st Just Special and Megan Hulse
2nd Timeline and Adrienne Markle
3rd  Sir Elegance and Cara Wolf
Academy Walk Trot
1st Neon Deon and Kerry Miller
2nd Sons First Glance and Cordy Brannon
Driving
1st Magellan and Jessica Rauls
2nd  Count and Haley Upton

 

 

 

 



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