News & Features


200+ Wins for Coach Jennings

Head men’s soccer coach Andy Jennings, former Vassar athletic director who spearheaded the transformation of the college’s athletic programs and facilities, celebrated his 200th win this fall.

A Summer Studying the Sun

Ian Snyder ’17 interned at NASA’s Marshall Splace Flight Center last summer, working with physicist Dr. Alphonse Sterling to collect data on spicules, bursts of ionized gases that soar from the sun’s surface up to 25,000 miles into space.

Grab your virtual reality goggles and buckle your seat belt!

A film major, a neuroscience major, three computer science majors, and a cog sci major put their heads together to create a platform for streaming 360° virtual reality videos. They see value not only for the gaming industry but education and fundraising, too.

A Vassar First for All-American Kate Christensen ‘18

Less than six weeks after she arrived on campus, Kate Christensen ’18 made Vassar tennis history: All-America status and advancement to the semifinals at the ITA National Small College Championships.

Latin American and Latino/a Studies 253: Children of Immigration

Since 1990, the children of immigrants have doubled in number, now representing 23% of the population of minors in the U.S. This course, “Children of Immigration,” explores how they are reshaping America and how America is reshaping them.

Posse Veteran Eduardo De La Torre '17 talks about his college experiences with U.S. News & World Report

From the Courtroom to the Big Screen

Pantelis Kodogiannis ’95 isn’t just an attorney, he also plays one on the big screen. The lead actor in the soon-to-be-released Greek feature film Promakhos, Kodogiannis plays an attorney that takes on the British Museum, in the hopes of returning the Parthenon Marbles to Greece more than 200 years after they were removed.

Hot Topics in Earth Science and the Media

“Hot Topics in Earth Science and the Media,” a freshman writing seminar, explores issues such as climate change and fracking and teaches students how to dig for the science behind them and how to critically analyze the arguments presented in the media.

Fun with Physics

Two art majors, two physics majors, and a prospective math/physics major collaborated to create a science curriculum for middle schoolers using animated astronauts, cavemen, construction workers, bugs, cars, and paper airplanes to illustrate physics principles.

Stacy Pettit '81 elected Albany County Surrogate Court Judge reports Times Union

In the Media – October 2014 Roundup

A roundup of Vassar and its alumnae/i, faculty members, students, administrators, and staff in the news for September 2014.

The Sports Page

A roundup of Vassar athletics in action over the course of October 2014.

A Day at Vassar’s Fourth Year

Six hundred Hudson Valley neighbors attended lectures, perused the artwork of the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, and soaked in the beauty of fall on campus during the fourth annual A Day at Vassar. To pull it off, more than 100 volunteers—faculty, students, administrators, and staff—donated hours of service for the October 18 event.

On Campus - November Preview

A preview of events on the Vassar campus for November 2014

One Year Out: Ocasio Willson ’13, Legislative Staffer

During his first year out of Vassar, Ocasio Willson ’13 put his skills as a political science major to work as a legislative staffer in the N.Y. State Assembly. Now, frustrated by the slow pace of political change, he is turning his attention to real estate.

The New York Times remembers Joan Quigley '47, astrologer to Nancy Reagan

Later, Jet Lag!

It’s time for travelers to say goodnight to jet lag. At least that’s the goal of a pair of Vassar alumnae/i who are now dreaming up a sleep mask designed to trick the brain into overcoming the sleep disruption associated with changes in time zones.

Student Orgs Working to Get Out the Vote

With Election Day less than a month away, Vassar student political clubs are running phone banks for Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney and NY State Senator Terry Gipson, advocating for campaign finance reform, and registering students to vote.

VCNY’s Unforgettable 4th Annual Fall Fête

On Thursday, October 16, several generations of Vassarions met at the historic Lotos Club in Manhattan for the Vassar Club of New York’s (VCNY) 4th Annual Fall Fête. It was an unforgettable night of spectacular company, food, drink, and jazz.

Oh, the Horror!

Jason Blum ’91, known for producing inexpensive independent horror movies—The Purge, Insidious, Paranormal Activity—that go on to make hundreds of millions of dollars at the box office, recently returned to Vassar to screen his latest feature, the critically acclaimed drama Whiplash, and to talk to film students about the business.

One Year Out: Brian Lu ’13, PhD Candidate at the Mayo Clinic

Now in his second year in the PhD program in biology at the Mayo School of Graduate Education at the world famous Mayo Clinic, Brian Lu ’13 and his team are concentrating on research that may eventually lead to a treatment for diabetes.

One Year Out: Preston Miller ’13, Master’s Candidate in Digital Forensics

What do you do with a degree in biochemistry and an interest in law enforcement? One year out of Vassar, Preston Miller ’13 is pursuing an MS in digital forensics at Marshall University, with a job waiting at one of the top NYC firms, Stroz Friedberg.

Less Than One Year Out: Asia Bryant, Software Developer for AT&T

A month after she graduated, Asia Bryant ’14 moved to Atlanta, GA, to take a job writing software for AT&T. A computer science and psychology double major, Bryant says, “I love the job, and I love the location—there’s lots to do in Atlanta.”

Professor Hua Hsu pens a brief history of NYC graffiti for The New Yorker

Jezebel Welcomes Emma Carmichael ’10

The new editor-in-chief of Jezebel, Emma Carmichael ’10, plans to put her stamp on the well-known women’s website. A former editor at the Hairpin and Deadspin—as well as the Miscellany News—Carmichael offers a look at the fast-paced world of online publishing and advice for those looking to find their way in.

Donna Nagy ’86: Friend of the Court

Donna Nagy ’86 is executive associate dean for academic affairs and C. Ben Dutton professor of law at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law. Nagy filed an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief in support of the Obama administration in the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. case, on which the U.S. Supreme Court recently sided with the retail establishment. Nagy will discuss the Hobby Lobby case during a campus lecture on Wednesday.

NYT: Linda Fairstein '69 to serve as special advisor to SUNY as it overhauls its sexual assault policies

Alumnae/i Present Options for Public Health Careers

This year's Freshman Families Weekend included a panel discussion "Career Paths in Public Health."

The New York Times interviews Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jane Smiley '71

Benjamin Busch '91 writes about his return to Iraq in Harper's Magazine

Posse veteran Carl Callender '17 and President Hill are quoted in the New York Times about vets attending highly selective colleges

The Sports Page

A roundup of Vassar athletics in action over the course of September 2014.

Geraldine Bond Laybourne ’69 Receives Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kill Medal Award

Former AAVC President Geraldine “Gerry” Laybourne ’69 was honored with the Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kill Medal Award. The award, bestowed earlier this month, is given annually to individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to humanitarian efforts in their communities and around the world.

In the Media – September 2014 Round-up

A roundup of Vassar and its alumnae/i, faculty members, students, administrators, and staff in the news for September 2014.

Second Round of “Posse” Vets, Class of 2018

Ten students were selected from a pool of more than 200 applicants to become part of the college’s second cohort of veteran students participating in the Posse Foundation program initiated with Vassar in 2012.

MEChA and College Match Working Together

12 College Match students are enrolled in this year’s freshman class, thanks in large part to the Vassar chapter of MEChA (Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan), which hosts about 40 Los Angeles high school juniors during their annual tour of East Coast colleges.

On Campus – October 2014 Preview

A preview of events on the Vassar campus for October 2014.

One Year Out: Andrew Kim ’13, Harvard Medical School Researcher

One year out of Vassar, Andrew Kim ’13 is part of a research team at Harvard Medical School that is tackling pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest forms of the disease. Kim’s team believe they have found a gene that may be promoting the progression of the disease.

Giving Voice to Homeless LGBTQ Youths

This summer, Lanbo Yang ’15 used creative writing as a way to help homeless LGBTQ youths explore the issues they face. As part of his Burnam Summer Fellowship, he created and conducted a writing workshop for the Ali Forney Center in New York City, which offers myriad services for homeless LGBTQ youths. In his downtime, Yang—who has plans to become a physician—also volunteered at a Bronx medical clinic.

One Year Out: Andrew Rovner ’13, Making Some Noise in Chicago

A double major in drama and philosophy, Andrew Rovner ’13 is working behind the scenes as a sound technician at the Steppenwolf, Jackalope, and Redmoon theater companies in Chicago. He’s also launched his own storefront theater group, First Floor.

One Year Out: Emily Izquierdo ’13, Production Assistant at ShadowMachine

Emily Izquierdo ’13 moved to L.A. with zero prospects but soon landed a job with Partizan Productions, a film and video production company. She’s since moved on to an animation studio called ShadowMachine that produces shows for Comedy Central.

Imrul Islam ’17 Captures “Songs of the Sea”

With a grant from Vassar’s June Ross Marks Travel Fund, Imrul Islam ’17 traveled to coastal villages of his native Bangladesh to learn more about the lives of fishermen and to tell their stories through photographs in a blog entitled “Songs of the Sea.”

Minerva Tantoco '86 named New York City's chief technology officer, reports Crain's

Welcome, Class of 2018!

The Class of 2018 brings 665 freshmen to Vassar’s campus, including 36 valedictorians, students from 46 states and 31 foreign countries, and 74 first-generation college students. Among our newest students are class council presidents, editors-in-chief, authors, musicians, veterans, and varsity sports captains. Read more about the class.

Testing, Testing, Testing

President George W. Bush predicted that test scores would rise under No Child Left Behind, but more than a decade later, they haven’t. Education professor Chris Bjork and Ford Scholar Kyle DeAngelis ’16 are looking at why.

Tobias Armborst of Interboro Partners: Planning Ahead For the Next Big One

Vassar assistant professor of art and urban studies Tobias Armborst and his partners at Interboro are the creators of one of the four plans selected from more than 140 to repair damage from Hurricane Sandy and protect Long Island from future storms.

One Year Out: Hannah Bober ’13, AmeriCorps Volunteer

Hannah Bober ’13 says that one of her post-Vassar goals was to get out of her comfort zone and expand her experiences. “AmeriCorps definitely did that for me,” she says. Right after graduation, she moved to rural Minnesota to work at a Boys and Girls Club.

Diving Into Research

Now in its fifth year, Diving Into Research gave Chase Morgan-Floyd, Alexandra Frazier, and four other members of the incoming class an opportunity to experience original research at the college level before the beginning of the semester.

Exploring College Program Changes Lives

Vassar initiated the Exploring College program in 2009 to increase college attendance rates for promising students from low-income families in Poughkeepsie and nearby. Almost all of the participants do go on to college, but NaIa Jackson is the first who will attend Vassar.

One Year Out: Dan Flynn ’13, City Year Boston

Dan Flynn’s long-term career goal is to practice law, but he took a year before applying to law schools to volunteer for City Year in the poverty stricken Dorchester section of Boston, an experience that he says will shape the rest of his life.

The Sports Page

A roundup of Vassar athletics in action over the course of August 2014.

Juliet Theater Gets New Life

The Juliet building has a celebrated history as the go-to place for campus moviegoers for more than 50 years—it operated as a cinema from 1938 to 1990. The extensively renovated brick building now has a new life as the Vassar College Store.

Protection From the Storm

Assistant Professor of Art and Urban Studies Tobias Armborst and his colleagues at Interboro Partners are the creators of one of the four plans selected from more than 140 to repair damage from Hurricane Sandy and protect Long Island from future storms.

President Hill co-authors Wall Street Journal op-ed about collaboration between Vassar and West Point

On Campus – September 2014 Preview

A preview of events on the Vassar campus for September 2014.

One Year Out: Documentary Filmmaker Elena Gaby ’13

One year out of Vassar, Elena Gaby ’13, who recently won Best Student Documentary at Cannes for her Vassar senior thesis film, is living in NYC, chasing freelance opportunities, and waitressing at a sports bar to close the gap.

One Year Out: Dante Varotsis ’13 Offers a Helping Hand

Dante Varotsis ’13, an aspiring physician and a member of an online community that brings together designers, fabricators, and distributors of 3-D printed prosthetics, is literally offering a hand to those in need.

One Year Out: Angela Dumlao '13, Assistant Director of SeaWife

One year out of Vassar, Angela Dumlao '13 was back on campus this summer as a member of the professional staff at the Powerhouse.

Matthew Vassar’s Crash Course on Western Philosophers

Take Matthew Vassar’s 1.4-minute crash course on Western Philosophers and heart your alma mater TODAY!


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