2008/2009 Annual Report
Nurturing Our Connections
This past year was marked by major efforts aimed at improving the connections between CAS and our members, friends, and stakeholders. In a college as large as this one, with such a large alumni base, creating good connections requires careful planning and execution.
The greatest accomplishment of the year was the redesign of the CAS website and the launch of a program to improve the websites of the various CAS departments and programs. These projects were the result of a creative and productive collaboration between the CAS Office of Communications and BU’s central Office of Marketing and Communications. Check out the new CAS at www.bu.edu/cas.
We also ramped up efforts to foster a greater sense of community within the College by revamping the former chairs and directors newsletter to create an internal e-newsletter for all faculty and staff and by improving the weekly e-newsletter distributed to all CAS students.
Strengthening Alumni Connections
One of the major efforts of recent years is the effort to strengthen the connections between CAS alumni and their alma mater. We have increased the number of opportunities for this to happen by holding events for alumni around the world, the country, in the Boston area, and on the web.
Among the events aimed at ensuring that CAS continues to play a role in the life-long learning of our alumni are two series based at BU:
- The Discoveries lectures, featuring leading faculty from Arts & Sciences. The third year of the series drew large crowds for topics such as the financial crisis bailout, the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution, and the problem of forgiveness. More than 400 alumni and guests attended this year’s three programs.
- “Arts, Culture, and Ideas,” a lunchtime discussion series launched this year in partnership with the BU Humanities Foundation. Jodi Cranston, associate professor of art history, inaugurated the series with a talk titled “The Loaded Brush: Interpreting Texture in Venetian Renaissance Painting.” The event attracted a sold-out crowd
We also launched a Webinar series with a discussion of climate change and global development, led by Pardee Center Director Adil Najam. Alumni from 17 states and 5 foreign countries registered for the program.
Increasing numbers of departments and programs are establishing alumni organizations or hosting events for their alumni. For example, the Core Curriculum formed an alumni association, “EnCore,” which hosted a number of successful events, including well-attended receptions at Reunion and Alumni Weekend in October and the Winterfest alumni weekend in February 2009.
CAS is also proud to honor and celebrate the achievements of our alumni. During the 2008 Reunion and Alumni Weekend, four Arts & Sciences alumni were honored at a Distinguished Alumni Awards Dinner: Laura Deaton (CAS’86), Alicia Cannon Mullen (CAS’83), Margarita M. Muñiz (CAS’72), and Matthew B. Smith (CAS’70, GMS’72). Subsequently, Alicia Cannon Mullen joined the Dean’s Leadership Advisory Board and Matthew B. Smith joined BU’s Alumni Council.
One of the most moving celebrations of a CAS alumna occurred at the 2009 Senior Breakfast, when Bridget Mooney (CAS ’05) shared her thoughts on the unexpected as she reflected on some of the profound surprises life had in store for her right after she graduated. See her remarks at BU Today.