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Alumnae Grants Fund Wide Range of Programs

The Alumnae of Northwestern has awarded more than $132,500 in gifts and grants to the university.

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April 28, 2009
EVANSTON, Ill. --- The Alumnae of Northwestern has awarded more than $132,500 in gifts and grants to the University.

The 25 funded proposals include undergraduate internships and research fellowships; support for visiting mentors in theatre arts, journalism, music, physics and psychology; career symposia; and interdepartmental programs and exhibits.

Internships and apprenticeships were funded for the following:
• Undergraduates to help design algae bioreactor to remove Strontium-90 from water (research and engineering project in collaboration with scientists from the Argonne National Laboratory and the Chicago Botanic Garden).
• A theater marketing team for summer apprenticeships with Broadway in Chicago.
• An undergraduate Alumnae Summer Fellowship for the Chemistry of Life Processes Institute.
• Research assistance for a study of sovereign wealth funds in Singapore and China.
• Assembly of teaching materials for a course in contemporary world religions.

Major grants for 2009 to 2010 were given for a guest principal and specialty mentors for the collaborative production of Leonard Bernstein's "Mass" and for the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art exhibit "A Room of Their Own: The Bloomsbury Artists in American Collections." The exhibit draws on literary as well as art resources.

The Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music will host a seven-day residency of the American composer John Corigliano, including two public performances, student concerts and master classes. The Corigliano residency is being supported through the Alumnae's Academic Enrichment Program, which will also help fund classes in music career development with the chamber music ensemble "eighth blackbird."

A grant was awarded for a two-day residency of Northwestern alumnus Daniel Kramer, award-winning United Kingdom director, who is working on a new musical based on the life of the Emperor Nero.

The Society of Physics Students plans an informal series featuring practicing physicists, particularly women, to showcase contemporary career possibilities. A one-woman play with a similar goal, "Manya: A Living History of Marie Curie," will be presented through the Academic Enrichment program at the Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science.

An Academic Enrichment grant will support the Literary Journalism course at Medill School of Journalism, sponsoring class visits by leading journalists.

Students in the Family Institute's Graduate Program in Counseling Psychology will participate in a student-coordinated professional development series. A grant was also awarded to support educational programming for Eating Disorders Awareness Week at Northwestern, part of a nationwide college counseling program.

Major alumnae gifts will purchase four new lecterns for Norris University Center and new audience and classroom seating for Hal and Martha Wallis Theater. Sophisticated digital equipment is earmarked for the Bienen School. Units include an interactive whiteboard system, a music dictation-mapping tool and a hardware and software system for visualizing music in real time. For non-music majors, funds were awarded to purchase video and audio media and other library resources. Funds also provided for a new digital sign next to the department of classics in Kresge Centennial Hall, and a printer for the accounting department serving alumnae endowments.

Proposals for Alumnae of Northwestern funding are submitted by faculty and faculty-sponsored student groups. Grants are given for proposals not included in a University budget and have been awarded to projects in virtually every University department during the history of the alumnae programs. Principal sources of funds are Waa-Mu Show sponsorships and the alumnae-sponsored School of Continuing Studies, currently celebrating its 40th year.

The Gifts and Grants Committee for the 2009 awards was chaired by Virginia Rosenberg (Weinberg '50) and Arlene Sunkel (Medill '56); and the Academic Enrichment Committee by Janet Bilandic (Kellogg '84) and Holly Sunshine (Weinberg '70).