Northwestern News 2012: Year in Review
A look back at the newsmakers of the past yearDecember 14, 2012
EVANSTON, Ill. --- Northwestern University witnessed history, drama, triumph and breakthrough in 2012. Take a look back at the people, programs and events that made news and delivered great memories this year.
Amid tears, cheers and standing ovations, 36 undergraduates made history as the first students at Northwestern University in Qatar to earn Bachelor of Science degrees in journalism and communication. The 154th annual commencement ceremony on the Evanston campus also featured a keynote address by Paul Farmer -- the physician known worldwide for his pioneering work in global health. Read these stories and other 2012 University highlights below.
Northwestern scientists pursued new knowledge across disciplines through more than 100 school- or University-based centers. And, for the third year in a row, research grant funding awarded to Northwestern totaled more than a half billion dollars. Researchers shed light on everything from early cancer detection and a wonder drug that could treat Alzheimer’s to romantic attraction and the dangers of sitting too much.
It was an extraordinary year for private donations to Northwestern, further positioning the University as one of the world’s great private research universities. The tremendous generosity of our supporters — alumni, corporate partners, foundations, parents, students and friends — resulted in the second highest giving total in Northwestern’s history. Highlights include one of the largest gifts ever to the Law School, the establishment of new academic programs, the building of world-class facilities and the University’s first event honoring scholarship donors.
The calendar featured major events and a year of firsts. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder delivered a key policy message at the Law School, and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel addressed an Evanston crowd as part of the One Book One Northwestern program. Dance Marathon generated a record-setting total of more than $1.1 million in cash and donations. Northwestern hosted a groundbreaking conference of African-American studies scholars as well as the inaugural Contemporary Thought Lecture. And we all took time out to watch the transit of Venus across the sun.
Northwestern students, faculty and alumni were recognized for outstanding achievement and scholarship in 2012. The University celebrated a Churchill Scholar, a Pulitzer Prize, a MacArthur Foundation “Genius” award, Fulbright fellowships and a Marshall Scholarship.
Wildcats, former and current, did us proud in 2012 by winning the “Northwestern Way” as President Morton Schapiro put it during a Chicago Public Radio interview. He referred to Northwestern student-athletes excelling on the field and in the classroom. Lacrosse won a seventh championship in eight years, two athletes competed at the Summer Olympics in London, men’s soccer made a deep run in the NCAA playoffs and football enjoyed a 9-win season on the way to the upcoming Gator Bowl Jan. 1, 2013.
A new building boom promises big changes on the Evanston campus. Work is underway on the new Music and Communication Building, the soon-to-be world-class home for the arts on the shore of Lake Michigan. The University announced plans for a major complex for athletics and recreation. And on a smaller scale, Northwestern threw open the doors to Deering Library in time for Homecoming, restoring the classic entrance that had been closed for 42 years.