Scenes from recent events:
Keep up to date with The Campaign for University of Puget Sound as we work together to realize our goal of $125 million to support our students and faculty.
University of Puget Sound senior William J. Rathje ’15 has been named a Rhodes Scholar. The accomplished student from Lake Oswego, Ore., is Puget Sound’s third Rhodes Scholar, and the first to also be offered a British Marshall Scholarship.
Rathje will join 31 other young men and women who will represent the United States as 2015 Rhodes Scholars. The Rhodes Scholars, selected from a pool of 877 candidates, will receive full financial support to pursue degrees at the University of Oxford in England.
Majoring in both computer science and English literature, Rathje attends Puget Sound as a Lillis Scholar, which provides full tuition, room, and board for students of exceptional academic promise. As a Rhodes Scholar, he will study for a Master of Science in computer science at Oxford beginning in October.
Rathje has pursued a broad liberal arts education at Puget Sound, exploring his talents in theater performance, poetry, musical performance and composition, the sciences, and applied science. A Goldwater Scholar and a junior member of Phi Beta Kappa, Billy has conducted research in proteomics, biochemistry, and computer science, and has developed four applications for iOS and Android, attracting than 15,000 downloads. He also co-founded a literary magazine for new plays, and prior to arriving at Puget Sound, composed a full-length musical that was performed by a professional cast in Portland, Ore. He is a contributing writer to USA Today College and has a peer-reviewed publication in computer science.
The past year has been an exciting one. Students and faculty alike have discovered new things, established enduring relationships, and are constantly imagining an even brighter future. Highlights of some of the year's innovative activity—much of it made possible by the One [of a Kind] campaign—can be found within the President's Annual Report. Take a look at some of the incredible impacts your investment in Puget Sound has made.
Andres Chavez, of Long Beach, Calif., and Douglas Palmer, of Niwot, Colo., have been named Matelich Scholars, honoring them with University of Puget Sound’s most esteemed award for students who combine extraordinary promise in academics and leadership.
The two freshmen impressed the awards committee with their innovative efforts to inspire and lead other young people, and with the excellence they demonstrated in their studies and diverse personal pursuits. The Matelich Scholarship, which covers all tuition and fees, including room and board, for up to four years, is awarded to students who exhibit exceptional drive and integrity, promise for outstanding academic and personal achievement, a commitment to service, and the capacity for a life of leadership.
The highly competitive scholarship is funded by a generous gift from George E. Matelich ’78 and Susan E. Matelich to Puget Sound’s $125 million One [of a Kind] comprehensive campaign.
Finalists for the Matelich Scholarship are selected from a pool of about 5,500 applicants to Puget Sound. Chavez and Palmer will become part of a cohort of six Matelich Scholars named since the program began making awards in 2012.
Andres Chavez attended Robert A. Millikan High School in Long Beach, where he led successful efforts to create an organization called The Mastermind, which works with students across the school to spread a message of unity, positivity, and self-improvement. While subsequently attending Long Beach College Preparatory Academy, he volunteered with the Veterans Affairs Long Beach Healthcare System hospital in the radiology department. He also interned at The Children’s Clinic in Long Beach.
At his high school Chavez was captain of the wrestling team, president of the Adventure Club, and a member of Model United Nations. The first in his family to attend college, he has plans to pursue a career in radiology.
Palmer attended Silver Creek High School in Longmont, Colo. He worked actively with the United Methodist Church in his role as a member of the Conference Council on Youth Ministries (CCYM). He led efforts to put on youth conferences and weekend retreats for hundreds of young people across Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. He also helped to develop and support youth ministries in churches across that region.
At his school Palmer played football and swam. He was also the low-brass section leader for two years. He was an ambassador for Silver Creek Leadership Academy, which works to build strong relationships between the school and the community. A triplet with two college-going siblings, Palmer will be joining Puget Sound’s Business Leadership Program and the Honors Program.
Emma Didier, of Berkeley, Calf., and Jordan Fonseca, of Albuquerque, N.M., have been named University of Puget Sound Lillis Scholars, honoring them with the college’s most prestigious award for students who show extraordinary promise in academics and scholarship.
The two freshmen, whose tuition, room, and board at Puget Sound will be covered by the scholarship for up to four years, are each engaged in an impressive variety of activities—ranging from design, science, and music, to languages and athletics. They were chosen for the highly competitive award based on their academic record, passionate interest in ideas, intellectual independence, and potential for pursuing excellence during their college years and throughout their careers.
The annual awards are funded by a generous gift from Gwendolyn H. Lillis P’05 and Charles M. Lillis P’05, made through The Lillis Foundation to Puget Sound’s $125 million One [of a Kind] comprehensive campaign.
Finalists for the Lillis Scholarship are selected from a pool of about 5,500 applicants to Puget Sound. Didier and Fonseca will become part of a cohort of 14 Lillis Scholars named since the program began making awards in 2008.
Didier attended Berkeley High School in California where she was named a Commended Student by the National Merit Scholarship Program. She also is a candidate for the International Baccalaureate Diploma. Didier traveled to Costa Rica with the field science and culture exchange program Ecology Project International. While there she participated in studies of the rainforest and volunteered to help protect the endangered leatherback sea turtle. The experience in Central America deepened her passion for environmental sustainability and confirmed her decision to participate in the Environmental Policy and Decision Making Program at Puget Sound.
She plays both the violin and the piano, and at Berkeley High School was a member of her school’s diving team. Didier was born in France and is a dual citizen of the United States and Germany, speaking both English and German at home.
Fonseca attended Albuquerque Academy in New Mexico where he was named a Commended Student by the National Merit Scholarship Program. At his school Fonseca tutored other students, participated in the National Science Bowl, joined the chess team, and ran cross country. While interning with a race car team at the student-oriented Formula SAE Series, he designed a three-element wing for a race car. He also was a technician for Vitality Works, a herbal medicinal supplements company, where he performed microbiology testing and ran statistical analyses.
After graduating from Albuquerque Academy in 2013, Fonseca studied abroad in Europe, primarily in Spain, where he participated in a Spanish immersion program and worked as a translator for an outdoor adventure company. Fonseca plans to study physics and mechanical engineering and to participate in the Dual Degree Engineering Program at Puget Sound. His additional pastimes include running, drawing, and discussing literature and ideas.
Ron Thomas and Mary Thomas welcomed more than 120 alumni, parents, and friends to the Foss Waterway Seaport Maritime Museum on Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014 for the annual President's Leadership Society reception. The reception honors and celebrates leadership donors to the Alumni, Parents, and Friends Funds.
Guests mingled with representatives from the Student Alumni Association and the phonathon program and enjoyed the musical talents of Professor of Music Theory and Composition, Robert Hutchinson, joined by David Deacon-Joyner and Andre Thomas. The evening's program also featured board member Mitzi Carletti '78, Alumni Fund Chair, Heidi Schooley '97, Max Mirande '15, a molecular and cellular biology major and captain of the football team, and President Thomas.
The President's Leadership Society recognizes the generosity and vision of annual leadership donors for their contributions to financial aid, faculty support, and campus maintenance. Photos from the evening are included above and on our events page.
More than 65 Loggers gathered Sat., Sept. 20, 2014, for a One [of a Kind] evening at Flex Space in Portland, Ore. Puget Sound alumni, parents, and friends shared stories over drinks and hors d’oeuvres with President Ron Thomas and Mary Thomas. The evening program featured several members of the Puget Sound community, including board of trustees members, Bill Nelson ’69 and Sunshine Morrison ’94, Lillis Scholar Billy Rathje ’15, and faculty-student trio: Director of Strings and Associate Professor of Violin Maria Sampen; Cordelia Wikarski Miedel Artist in Residence Meta Weiss; and Clara Fuhrman ’16. This event marked the official start of the Portland regional campaign, an initiative focused on increasing support and participation among area Loggers as part of the $125 million One [of a Kind] campaign. Photos from the evening are included in the video above.
More than 75 Loggers gathered Sat., Sept. 13, 2014, for a One [of a Kind] evening at the California Science Center in Los Angeles, Calif. Puget Sound alumni, parents, and friends shared stories over drinks and hors d’oeuvres with President Ron Thomas and Mary Thomas. The evening’s program featured members of the Puget Sound community, including board of trustees members Rick Brooks ’82 and Kathleen Duncan ’82, and a faculty-student duo: Director of Strings and Associate Professor of Violin Maria Sampen and Zachary Hamilton ’15. This event marked the official start of the Los Angeles regional campaign, an initiative focused on increasing support and participation among area Loggers as part of the $125 million One [of a Kind] campaign. You can see photos from the evening in the video above.
The 2013-14 fiscal year marked a new record for the Puget Sound Fund. Over 9,000 generous alumni, parents, and friends contributed $2.6 million in expendable operating support. These gifts make a direct and immediate impact, allowing Puget Sound to offer financial aid to students in need, supporting our talented faculty, contributing to a wide variety of co-curricular activities, and maintaining our beautiful campus. They also represent a powerful vote of confidence in the university.
The Ben B. Cheney Foundation has contributed $300,000 to support University of Puget Sound's plan to build a modern and inspiring Athletics and Aquatics Center on campus. This generous support brings the college closer to the $17.5 million goal that will help fund an upgrade and extension of Memorial Fieldhouse, including a new swimming pool and fitness center. The facility will serve hundreds of student-athletes, as well as campus and community members.
The foundation made two separate $150,000 gifts over the fundraising period, the second of which qualifies for the ongoing dollar-for-dollar match pledged by a group of Puget Sound trustees last summer. As of June 30, 2014, Puget Sound has raised $13.9 million toward the $17.5 million goal.
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has made a $600,000 grant to the university to support new humanities and Honors program initiatives that will prepare students for the raid changes of the digital age. The four-year award for an initiative called "Humanities and Culture in the Digital Age," will give rise to new classes that intersect across the humanities, arts, culture, and technology. It will also support faculty development, and new ways of learning, including "24-hour living and learning" in student cohorts, or experiential learning that may involve hands-on projects or community activities. Work by faculty will begin this summer, with the aim of creating sustainable new programs by mid-2018 and setting in place an agenda for ongoing innovation.
The credit rating agency that has expressed concerns about the higher education sector in general sees strength in Puget Sound’s financial and operational management, predicting a stable financial outlook for the college. The agency recently conferred an A1 long-term rating and the top VMIG-1 rating for superior short-term credit strength, commending Puget Sound for its solid financial resource base, thoughtful and conservative fiscal management, consistently positive operating performance, and established student demand, while acknowledging that the university operates in a highly competitive landscape.
Puget Sound has been working to further secure its long-term financial stability through a $125-million comprehensive campaign to support students, faculty, and academic and residential life programs. The largest share of the funds raised will go toward endowment for student financial aid.
The Neukom Family Foundation has made a $500,000 gift to it's existing endowed student scholarship fund that is helping talented students from groups underrepresented in higher education to attain a college degree at University of Puget Sound.
The Neukom Family Endowed Scholarship, first awarded in 2001, provides financial assistance to underrepresented students in Pierce County who demonstrate academic excellence and financial need. The continuing support of the foundation, through several gifts in recent years, has produced 13 Neukom scholars to date. This new gift moves the fund to a level that ultimately will support full-tuition awards for future recipients.
The foundation's gifts to the scholarship fund have also played a significant role in helping Puget Sound raise $44 million for student financial aid.
Over 40 generous donors gave $12,000 in support of Puget Sound students and faculty during the one-day online GiveBig event, organized by The Seattle Foundation. Every contribution to Puget Sound will be increased by funds provided by The Seattle Foundation and other sponsors. Gifts directly support financial aid for students, retention of top-notch faculty, and innovative academic programming.
University of Puget Sound hosted the second of two annual scholarship luncheons yesterday, honoring the generosity of those who have created scholarships, and recognizing the 2013-14 scholarship award recipients. Guests had the opportunity to meet the accomplished students who have benefited from the scholarships they have created, and enjoyed a short video about the Lillis Scholarship. The Lillis Scholarship is one of two scholarships the university offers that covers the full cost of tuition, room, and board for up to four years of education at Puget Sound. It is one of many new scholarships—at all levels—that have been created since the launch of the One [of a Kind] campaign. These scholarships comprise a portion of the over $40 million in financial aid that was awarded to students this year, and ensure that deserving students can attend Puget Sound and excel academically, regardless of their ability to pay.
Learn more about our commitment to increasing our endowment for financial aid to ensure that Puget Sound can continue to meet the needs of admitted students.
More than 75 Loggers gathered Sat., Mar. 29, 2014, for a One [of a Kind] evening at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Ha. Puget Sound alumni, parents, and friends shared stories over drinks and hors d’oeuvres with President Ron Thomas. The evening's program featured several members of the Puget Sound community, including trustees Bob Shishido ’72, P’09 and Guy Watanabe ’75, M.B.A.’76, alumna and Hawaii Alumni Club Coordinator LesliAnn Kikuchi ’07, D.P.T.’10, and alumna Grace Youn ’13. The following day over 30 Maui-based alumni and friends gathered at Ulupalakua Ranch and Maui’s Winery for an event hosted by owners Sumner Erdman ’88 and Angie Erdman. Guests mingled with President Thomas while sampling local cuisine and wine. These events marked the official start of the Hawaii regional campaign, an initiative focused on increasing support and participation among area Loggers as part of the One [of a Kind] campaign.
Peggy Smith '64 developed her passion for chemistry at Puget Sound—a passion which led her to earn a Ph.D. and go on to a successful career in government. In planning her legacy, Peggy had one rule: put your money where your values are. For her, that's education. Peggy received support throughout her educational journey, and believes strongly in paying it forward. Her deferred gift of a retirement plan designation through a bequest will make a lasting impact, ensuring that generations of future Loggers will have access to a liberal arts education that will continue to shape them long after they graduate.
To learn more about how your bequest could transform future students' lives, visit pugetsound.edu/plannedgiving.
Bitcoin entrepreneur Nicolas Cary '07 made an unrestricted gift of $10,000 in bitcoin to the Puget Sound Alumni Fund this week. The donation is thought to be the first bitcoin gift to a U.S. college.
The 28-year-old CEO of Blockchain, which runs the world's most popular "digital wallet" for bitcoins, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Puget Sound's Business Leadership Program. Of the gift, Cary said, "I always wanted to give back to Puget Sound once I was in a position to do it. I was the grateful recipient of scholarships and loans, and now that I'm in a position to make a difference, I want to help others get on the road to success."
Rachel Pepper, a research fellow at University of California, Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in physics from Harvard University, has been appointed as the first William D. and Flora McCormick Chair in Biophysics. Pepper earned a Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude in biophysics from Brown University and was then named a Marshall Scholar at Cambridge University, where she was awarded a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in physics. She brings research interests that span physics, biology, and engineering, and classroom experience with leading-edge science education techniques.
This appointment in the rapidly expanding, interdisciplinary study of biophysics was made possible by a $2 million gift last summer from William and Flora McCormick, parents of a Puget Sound alumnus.
Pepper will begin her teaching appointment in fall 2014. Learn more about Pepper's research interests, including her current work with marine larvae, which is adding to our understanding of how tiny ocean organisms can navigate through turbulent ocean flows to environments where they might thrive.
The W.M. Keck Foundation has awarded University of Puget Sound a $250,000, three-year grant to develop The Keck Initiative for NeuroCulture. Led by Siddharth Ramakrishnan, Puget Sound's newly appointed Jennie M. Caruthers Chair in Neuroscience, in conjunction with faculty scientists and ethicists, the initiative aims to create a culture of neuroscience for both students and the public.
The Keck Initiative for NeuroCulture will bring TED-style public talks; community partnerships; summer NeuroArt workshops for K-12 students; and public seminars, exhibitions, and blogs about neuroethics, neural disorders, and consciousness. Puget Sound faculty members will be offered training in neuroscience techniques and curricula, and students will gain new hands-on research and interdisciplinary study opportunities.
Professors from a range of disciplines are involved in the project, including: David Andresen, associate professor of psychology; Susannah Hannaford, professor of biology; Suzanne Holland, professor of religion and John B. Magee Professor of Science and Values; Jung Kim, assistant professor of exercise science; Gary McCall, associate professor and chair of exercise science; and Heidi Orloff, professor of exercise science.
The Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation has committed $2 million in support of the new Athletics and Aquatics Center, moving the college forward in its plan for a modern $17.5 million fitness and recreation facility that will be a gathering point for hundreds of campus and community members. The Leavey Foundation gift qualifies for the dollar-for-dollar match pledged by a group of Puget Sound trustees in July 2013.
The Athletics and Aquatics Center will be home to Puget Sound's 2600 students, 600 faculty and staff, 23 varsity teams, and to hundreds of intramural athletes. In addition to providing a state-of-the-art home for Puget Sound's competitive championship swim teams, it will provide physical fitness facilities for campus members and the community, and serve academic programs including exercise science, physical therapy, and occupational therapy.
This gift is the second large commitment from the Leavey Foundation in support of Puget Sound's One [of a Kind] campaign and the university's master plan. In 2010 the foundation pledged up to $2 million toward the construction of a new health sciences building—The William T. and Gail T. Weyerhaeuser Center for Health Sciences, which opened in fall 2010. For more information on the Athletics and Aquatics Center, visit: pugetsound.edu/aquatics-center.
Financial aid enabled Drew to enroll at Puget Sound. Since then, he has challenged himself as a student-athlete, discovered a passion for biochemistry, developed his musical talent, honed his leadership skills as president of the Kayak Club, and shared his love for Puget Sound as a Passages leader and Phonathon caller.
This one-of-a-kind experience would not be possible without the ongoing support of alumni. Drew shares what alumni support has meant for him, and how he plans to pay it forward. Watch: pugetsound.edu/my_story.
The Class of 2014 recently kicked off their Senior Class Gift Campaign with a very successful evening event attended by over 200 classmates. The Senior Class Gift program celebrates seniors' first step into the Logger alumni community. It offers an opportunity to give back to the community who helped to shape them, and to ensure that the same opportunities are available to the next generation of students. Seniors make a five-year pledge to support the Alumni Fund with gifts to financial aid for future students. They donate $5 this year, and increase their gift by $5 each year, for a total of $75 over five years. These gifts add up—over five years, the entire class can raise almost $50,000!
Dr. Gwendolyn Lillis P'05 and Dr. Charles Lillis P'05 were both first generation college students, and credit their education to their success in life. They believe that a good education is a life-changing investment, and established The Lillis Scholarship to provide promising and outstanding students with the opportunity to receive a transformative Puget Sound education. Selection for the Lillis Scholarship is highly competitive—only two Lillis Scholarships are awarded to entering first-year students each fall.
In our newest video, meet Drs. Charles and Gwendolyn Lillis P'05, and Lillis scholars Kelton Mock '14 and Becca Ebert '15, and learn more about what the Lillis Scholarship means to each of them.
Kiplinger's Personal Finance has included Puget Sound in its 2014 list of the country's best value liberal arts colleges. Puget Sound and the other schools included in the 2014 lists represent the colleges that provide high-quality academics at a reasonable cost during these continued tough economic times. The colleges exemplify the attributes parents and students look for in higher education, including small class sizes, a good freshman retention rate, and a high four-year graduation rate.
Although private universities and colleges generally carry higher sticker prices than the in-state prices at public institutions, private colleges can actually be cheaper because of their generous financial aid, the magazine noted. Puget Sound, for example, offers merit-based or need-based financial aid to more than 90 percent of its students. With 2,600 undergraduate students and a student to faculty ratio of 12:1, Puget Sound offers a high-quality education in an environment where 99 percent of tenure-line faculty members hold the highest degree in their field and more than half of students do at least one internship.
More than 150 Loggers from the Seattle area gathered Saturday, Sept. 28, for a One [of a Kind] evening at The Foundry. The evening's program featured several members of the Puget Sound campus community, including board of trustees members Rick Brooks ’82, Bill Weyerhaeuser, and Jill Nishi ’89, student-athlete Joe Cerne ’14, and faculty-student music trio: Director of Strings and Associate Professor of Violin Maria Sampen; Professor of Piano Tanya Stambuk; and student-musician Brenda Miller ’15. This event marked the “official” start of the Seattle regional campaign, an initiative focused on increasing support and participation among area Loggers as part of the One[of a Kind] campaign.
More than 325 Loggers from the Tacoma area gathered Saturday, Sept. 21, for a One [of a Kind] evening at LeMay-America’s Car Museum. Puget Sound alumni, parents, and friends shared stories over drinks and hors d’oeuvres with President Ron Thomas and Mary Thomas. The evening program featured several members of the Puget Sound campus community, including board of trustees members Lyle Quasim ’70, Hon. ’05 and Barb Walker P’05, P’07, student-athlete Katy Ainslie ’15, and faculty trio: David Requiro, the Cordelia Wikarski-Miedel Artist in Residence at Puget Sound; Director of Strings and Associate Professor of Violin Maria Sampen; and Professor of Piano Tanya Stambuk. This event marked the official start of the Tacoma regional campaign, an initiative focused on increasing support and participation among area Loggers as part of the One [of a Kind] campaign.