The Department of Classics

Fall Alumni Letter

Fall 2007

The Department of Classics to Esteemed Baccalaureates, greetings:

The Romans believed that their earliest historical memories were preserved in brief notices of each year's events that were recorded on tablets at the instigation of the pontifex maximus. (See further Bruce W. Frier, Libri Annales Pontificum Maximorum: The Origins of the Annalistic Tradition. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1999.)

Some years ago the Department commenced an annalistic tradition of its own with the inauguration of the 'Community' section of our website. This presents a continuous record of brief notices chronicling news and accomplishments from students, alumni, faculty and staff.

Perhaps the historians of a future age will seize upon this material as an invaluable source for the efflorescence of Classical Studies in western Michigan at the dawn of the twenty-first century. In the meantime, we encourage you to make a habit of visiting the site from time to time in order to keep up with friends and to learn about the latest happenings at 260 Lake Huron Hall.

Highlights include pictures from last spring's first-ever nonstop HOMERathon and from the Classical Theater Workshop's mainstage production of Seneca's Oedipus. This year we welcome Visiting Professor Julie Hruby, who will be filling in for Profs. Pazdernik and Morison in Fall and Winter, respectively. The Department has commenced a search for a seventh (!) full-time tenure-track faculty member and is seeking a candidate with interests in classical philosophy.

It is of course imperative and essential that all of you continue to do your part by keeping us up-to-date with changes of address and other contact information, news of professional, personal, and educational attainment, and thoughts, reflections, and reminiscences about your time here and its influence in your ongoing project of self-examination and -actualization.

(We will not publish or disseminate your contact information. Let us know about any additions or corrections to the material appearing online. Please tell us whether we may post your news/thoughts/reflections/reminiscences on the website. Be forewarned that you run the risk of being quoted verbatim [in which case we will seek your express authorization] if your contributions are excessively clever and eloquent in their own right and/or instrumental in promoting the good work of the Department of Classics.)

Submissions may be directed to Ginny.

We hope to see and hear from you!

Fall 2006

Dear distinguished alumnus/alumna--

This is the first of what we hope will become a(n) (ir)regular series of messages and updates from the Department of Classics at GVSU. We hope to remain very much in your thoughts just as you remain very much in ours. We also want to catch up (and keep up) with you as you move from place to place and pursue your lives.

Although most of the time it feels like we've always been here, in fact 2006-07 is the first time that all six of the permanent faculty have been together at the same time. We're joined by Prof. James Wells in his second year as a visitor, and of course all of us rely upon Ginny to keep us in line.

We've established a section of the department web site, called Community, as a place to record news, events, and accomplishments from students, alumni, faculty, and staff. Please have a look at it from time to time and--most importantly--SEND US NEWS OF YOUR OWN. Fama volat parvam subito vulgata per urbem (as Vergil tells us), but it's up to all of us to lend a helping hand.

We would be immensely gratified if you should reply to this message with the following (even if you think that we're already in possession of this information--the extent of our ignorance would alarm you):

1. Both a current and a permanent address, including phone numbers and email. (We will not publish or disseminate this information without your permission.)

2. Details of schooling, employment, and other notable vocations, avocations, and accomplishments since you left GVSU.

3. Names of spouses and children.

3. Updates, omissions, or corrections of material posted to the dept. website, esp. to the Community section.

4. Thoughts or reflections about experiences during your time with us. Have you had a moment in which you suddenly "flashed back" to an experience in one of our courses or in the dept. suite? Are there occasions on which your laboriously-acquired knowledge of antiquity and obscure languages has been (or conspicuously failed to be) of use?

5. Any instructions about what we may or may not do with this information. We will not publish or disseminate contact information without your permission. Tell us if you don't want us to put your news (in something like the form "Phlebas T. Philologus writes, '...'") on the web site. You may rest assured that anything we do put on the web site will seek to portray you (and, of course, us) in the most flattering light possible.

Most importantly, don't be a stranger!



Page last modified November 4, 2009