Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Science writing professor talks tapeworms over dinnerCross Campus | Yale Daily News

Our own Carl Zimmer took his talk about Cantagion to Morse College recently.  Read all about it in the Yale Daily News by clicking on the link below.

Science writing professor talks tapeworms over dinnerCross Campus | Yale Daily News

LA Class Get Together

Los Angeles may be 3,000 miles from New Haven, but that didn't stop the class of '87 from gathering together to reconnect prior to our reunion. Liz and Steve Atlee opened their beautiful Hancock Park home for the event, and over beers and guacamole (this is L.A. after all), Jason Reese, Jen Devore and Darcy Troy hosted a group that included Matt Sloan with his wife and two adorable girls, Marcy Hardart and two of her brood, Sy Sussman, Ken Bernstein, John and Alexa Pogue, Karen Eastman, Ethan Goldstine and Caprice Young with her daughter Roxanne. The adults ate, drank and chatted, while the kids ran around playing badminton, jumping in a bouncy house and making their own cotton candy. A good time was had by all! We highly recommend holding a mini-reunion of your own in your neck of the woods...

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Contagion: Could they really make a vaccine so quickly? (4) - By Arthur Allen and Carl Zimmer - Slate Magazine

Lisa and I went to see the movie Contagion last night.  Interesting and thought provoking, it made us look a little differently at everyone when we ventured out this morning.

It turns out that classmate Carl Zimmer wrote a post about Contagion.  Click below to read Carl’s take on things.

Contagion: Could they really make a vaccine so quickly? (4) - By Arthur Allen and Carl Zimmer - Slate Magazine

Stew, Heidi Rodewald, Jon Spurney Re-Opening Joe’s Pub with Songs from Passing Strange

Check out Jon Spurney’s next gig by clicking below.

Stew, Heidi Rodewald, Jon Spurney Re-Opening Joe’s Pub with Songs from Passing Strange

Ways to Connect to Yale -- where to get your news

Sometimes people ask about to best connect to Yale and get more news about what is going on.  Here are some suggestions:

•ELine Newsletter –

A monthly online newsletter with information about Yale initiative, programs, and research.

•Online Alumni Directory –

Free online directory that allows you to search for and keep in touch with fellow alumni, and update your own contact information.

•Virtual Yale Station Email Forwarding Alias –

An email alias (eg. that will forward your email to a full service email account of your choosing

•Yale Daily News –

During term, the Oldest Campus Daily is the source for updates from the student perspective.

•Yale Calendar of Events –

If you find yourself in New Haven, this is your best source for information on campus-wide activities.

The Drive for 25 -- Reunion News

Dear Classmates,

Over the last few years, we haven't pestered you much about class dues. Why is that? Well, for a couple of reasons. First, we didn't have much we needed dues for. Our events have been self-funded and the blog and e-newsletter is not costly. Second, we didn't have a pressing need for funds. Both of those things have changed.

In the last several months, classmates have stepped up to organize what is shaping up to be a great 25th Reunion. We could use your help. Specifically, we need to increase our class treasury so we can nail down the compelling offerings we hope to provide at reunion and to get the service opportunities we are putting together off the ground. Planning these sorts of things is much simpler when we have the capital necessary to assist class volunteers with the necessary support.

Here's how you can help:

Despite the assumption shared by many that Yale will subsidize our reunion, the truth is that we, as a class, pay for our entire reunion. A very basic reunion costs hundreds of thousands of dollars. A GREAT 25th reunion costs much more -- diverse and tasty menus, late night hospitality, class-level activities and a financial aid fund so everyone can come! Our class is a GREAT class and we should have a GREAT reunion! To do that, we need help! Please consider making an enhanced class dues donation that can be directed toward our reunion. Individuals or groups (teams, colleges, SIGs, or friends) can get together and be part of the Class of '87 history.

What We Need:                   What It Costs:                                   
Cover fixed costs                      $100,000                                      
Working AV System                 $75,000                                        
Diverse, tasty menus                  $75,000                                    
Better booze                              $50,000                                     
Financial Aid up to                     $25,000                                       
(so everyone can come) (every dollar helps!)

Kids' Tent                                 $25,000                                       
Additional Programming            $10,000                                        

Hospitality Suite                        $10,000                                        
Umbrellas                                 $1,500                                          

We also would love to get in-kind donations! How about… Wine, Booze, Snacks, Video and other games for the Kids Tent, Swag (anything we can put in our goody bags to take home – books, kids stuff, DVDs, etc.)


Contributing is easy.  Please click here, or the title of this blog entry, to access the class dues website and make a supplemental dues payment. Please specify in the comments box that your directed donation should be earmarked for Reunion. Unfortunately these donations cannot be counted toward the official class reunion gift, but we will publicly thank you (unless you would prefer that we don't) and they WILL count toward having a great Reunion weekend!

For in-kind donations, please email Darcy Troy at

Your Reunion Chairs,

Lisa Harkness      Darcy Troy    Tim Harkness

Reunion News -- Hotels

Yale reserves a block of rooms at various hotels in the New Haven area.  They are not yet available . . . but we know when they will be available.

Later this fall, the Association of Yale Alumni will send out a mass e-mail to all reunion classes.  The day that e-mail goes out, the hotel rooms are available.

So, keep an eye out for a reunion email from AYA.  (We will try to give you a heads up on the blog beforehand, but cannot promise that we will know.)

Reunion News -- Group Discount on American Airlines

With our 25th Reunion just a few months away, we wanted to make sure that everyone can make it.  Here is some important news:

We now have a way for Classmates to get a discount on American Airlines. 

Here is how it works:  We have a group promotion code. American Airlines encourages everyone to book on line at in order to avoid a $25 per person telephone ticketing fee. They also encourage everyone to book soon, since it is a holiday weekend.

Our name is "Yale 25th Reunion" and our promo code is A4752BL. Using it will give everyone a 5% discount, and for every 40 tickets bought we get one free one. We are not quite sure how that works, but I guess it will be a good problem to have if it occurs!
People can fly from anywhere into JFK, La Guardia, Newark or Bradley any time between May 22 and May 29

Nellie Shipley Named One of Nation's Top Lawyers

Classmate Nellie Shipley has been named to the 2012 edition of The Best Lawyers in American in the category of Real Estate Law. Nellie is a frequent author and speaker and is well known in her field. To get a sense of Nellie's work, you can click below to hear one of her talks:

I did a post a while back about Nellie's work.  Click here to read more. 

Tamar Gendler gives a talk on YouTube

Check out Tamar Gendler's latest YouTube Post:

Gideon Brower is KCRW’s September Volunteer of the Month! | Members

Check out this piece on the Class of 1987’s Gideon Brower.  Well done Gideon!



Gideon Brower is KCRW’s September Volunteer of the Month! | Members

Snooping in the Age of E-book - This Life -

Click the title of this post (or the link below) to read Bruce Feiler’s latest NYT column on e-books.  As an e-book reader, I found it pretty interesting.

Snooping in the Age of E-book - This Life -

Class of 87 to Decide Fate of Obama Health Care Law . . . not really: Obama Health-Care Law Gets Mixed Reaction From Appeals Court - Bloomberg

The Class of 1987’s own Brett Kavanaugh is a judge on the Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C.  He is on the three judge panel now reviewing with the Obama Health-Care Law is constitutional.  Although this panel will likely not get the last say – there is a split among circuit courts, so this issue will probably be decided by the Supreme Court – it is nice to know a classmate is involved.  Click below for more details.

Obama Health-Care Law Gets Mixed Reaction From Appeals Court - Bloomberg

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Degrees of Inequality -- a Tale of two colleges: Yale and Southern Connecticut

I admit that I can be a bit of a geek sometimes. When not reading fiction or mainstream non-fiction, I sometimes read more esoteric books. My latest foray into the obscure is a sociology book by Ann L. Mullen, "Degrees of Inequality."

A write up I found on the internet summarizes it as follows:

Dr. Ann L. Mullen studied at Yale in the early 2000s; and like almost all of her colleagues, she had zero interaction with students attending Southern Connecticut State University. The schools are separated by a 2 mile stretch of Goffe Street in New Haven, but are worlds apart in terms of privilege and attitudes toward education.

“The contrast was really intriguing from a sociological point of view. Over half of the parents of [SCSU] students didn’t attend college. That was pretty rare for a person attending Yale,” says Mullen, from her office at the University of Toronto.

Her latest book, “Degrees of Inequality,” is based on hundreds of interviews with students from both schools. They catalog the way in which class and privilege affect our perceptions and even enjoyment of higher of education.

“Because I’ve been a middle-class student, I was really familiar with this belief that college is more than just completing a major. It’s an experience that encompasses living on your own for the first time, making friends, joining clubs,” says Mullen. “I was surprised at the degree to which that was completely absent for [SCSU] students. They thought of it more as work. It’s something that you have to do to get a reward at the end.”

At least for the students of SCSU and Yale, Mullen found that higher education does not diminish class divisions in terms of physical interactions or psychological perceptions. It actually exacerbates them: “We keep looking to higher education as a fix for a lot of other structural inequalities. Like if we can just get more people to go to university, we can start to level inequality. But I’ve become convinced that higher education is not the solution. Social problems can’t be fixed at that high a level.”


Mullen's book raises some thought provoking questions.  Mainly, it makes clear that there is a huge cultural divide between those who go to Yale and those who go to Southern.  Southern students, for instance, gave detailed answers when asked: why did you decide to go to college?  Yale students, by contrast, didn't understand the question -- of course they were going to go to college.  They never considered otherwise.

From where does this cultural difference stem?  A long discussion in the book tackles this question.  For those interested in examining the advantages we received from a Yale education -- and the advantages we are bestowing on our children by raising them to value a liberal arts education -- you should read Mullen's book.  It is thought provoking.  It is also food for thought when examining the growing diffences between "haves" and "have notes" in our society.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Pennies From Space? Hunt on for Valuable Meteorite -

Dante Centouri has some interesting things to tell us about meteorites.  Click below to hear more.

Pennies From Space? Hunt on for Valuable Meteorite -

Floating University Launches New Model for Education -- A Liberal Arts Education in 12 Hours! - MarketWatch

Classmate Tamar Gendler is participating in an exciting an innovative program called the Floating University.  Click below to read more about what Tamar and her colleagues are up to.

Floating University Launches New Model for Education -- A Liberal Arts Education in 12 Hours! - MarketWatch

News from Doris Iarovici

Here is a note I received from Doris Iarovici:

Wanted to share some news for class notes: my daughter, Ariel Katz, will be headed up to New Haven soon as part of the class of 2015! It will give me a good excuse to come back for The Game, or just to visit.

Looking forward to reunion!

Best, Doris Iarovici

News from Preston Lewis

Here is a note I received from Preston Lewis:

After stints at HBO, MTV and Disney, I returned to Time Warner and have been running Warner Bros. Consumer Products' business for Australia and New Zealand over the last 4 years. My family - wife, Cari, and children - Carson (17), Faith (14) and Jackson (11) - are all enjoying life Down Under and the wonderful city of Melbourne.

During a recent business trip and family vacation - and college tour for my eldest! - in the US this summer, I had the chance to see a few of our classmates - Pearlena Igbokwe and Jon Walls in LA, Tracey Capers in NYC and David Pollay in FLA. Also spoke to Stephanie Anderson and Yves Labissiere by phone. Everyone is managing careers and/or raising families, and simply enjoying life. Wonderful to think that these relationships are all 25+ years strong. Go Yale!

Looking forward to seeing everyone at our reunion in 2012!