Feb 062019

Thank-A-Giver Day (TAG Day) is on Monday, February 11. This day provides the IWU campus community with the opportunity to thank the donors who support Illinois Wesleyan. IWU celebrates each year in mid-February because it marks the symbolic point during the academic year – about 70% of the way through – when tuition dollars run out and support from alumni and friends, our endowment, and external grants kicks in for the remainder of the year.

Thank you to all donors who help make the IWU experience possible!

Jan 072019

Emeritus Associate Professor of Economics Robert (Bob) Leekley passed away on Tuesday, Jan.1. Prof. Leekley started teaching at Illinois Wesleyan in 1974, and from his first year to his 44th, his commitment to IWU and our students remained unchanged. His positive impact on generations of students and colleagues will not be forgotten. Read an obituary. A service will be held in the IWU Evelyn Chapel from 11-12 on Wednesday, January 9th.

Jul 192018

Matt Mason ’16 was invited to compose a new piano piece for an international composition project called 250 Pieces for Beethoven in celebration of his 250th birthday. For the upcoming anniversary  2020, Bonn pianist Susanne Kessel invited composers from around the world to compose piano pieces which refer to Ludwig van Beethoven and his work. Since 2013, Susanne Kessel issues personal invitations to composers of new music, jazz and film music. The premieres of the piano pieces are being held in Beethoven’s birth city, Bonn, while further performances of selected pieces will be held in other cities as well. Radio recordings (WDR) and CD productions will accompany the project. All the pieces will be published by 2020 from EDITIONS MUSICA FERRUM and will be available for the international music world. Other composers include Academy Award winner Bruce Broughton, David Bowie’s Pianist Mike Garson, 3 time Pulitzer Prize nominee, and many others from all over the world.

Jul 102018
Allyce Carryn Torres ’13 and Alexa Fajardo Eldridge ’16 will be preforming in “Firefly Love” at Something Marvelous, a magical realism theater festival based in Chicago.
Something Marvelous cultivates new works of magical realism and curates a reflective dialogue with the community to examine, broaden, and embolden the genre. Our work uses theatricality to awaken imagination and inspire empathy for new perspectives.

Firefly Love by Alejandro Ricaño and translated by Héctor Garza  will run from June 30 to July 15, 2018 at Athenaeum Theatre, Studio One in  Chicago.
Allyce will be preforming as Lola in Firefly Love and is an Actor, Teaching Artist, and Activist originally from San Diego. Recent credits include WHAT OF THE NIGHT at Stage Left & Cor, THE BOTTLE TREE at Stage Left, FEFU & HER FRIENDS at Halcyon Theatre, and INTO THE BEAUTIFUL NORTH at 16th Street Theatre. Her credits at Something Marvelous include DON’T LOOK and REFERENCES TO SALVADOR DALÍ MAKE ME HOT. She is the Managing Director of Windy City Performs, the Company Manager of Something Marvelous, and an ensemble member at Stage Left.
Alexa will be preforming as Lola in Firefly Love on July 6th and 8th. She  is a Cuban American actor and Improvisor new to the Windy City and loving every minute! Alexa just finished a year long Acting Apprenticeship at Florida Studio Theatre in Sarasota, FL where she performed in Stephen Spotswood’s Rolling World Premiere of DOUBLEWIDE as Lorelai, and you can find her now at The Second City as a student in their prestigious conservatory program!
Click here for more information about Firefly Love and links to tickets.
Jun 262018

Sydney Muchnik ’16 was awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at Yale University.

The highly selective NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program accepts 2,000 applicants from a nationwide pool of undergraduates in STEM fields. Fellows – such as Muchnik – receive a three-year annual stipend of $34,000, as well as an additional $12,000 to cover education costs to conduct research at any U.S. graduate institution of their choice. Fellows also benefit from the international reputation of the program, which includes numerous Nobel Prize winners, Google co-founder Sergey Brin and former U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu as former Fellows.

As an Illinois Wesleyan undergraduate student, Muchnik was active in the campus community where she served as President of the Math Honors Society and Vice President of Colleges Against Cancer. She also worked as a Resident Assistant and a Residential Community Advisor. In addition, Muchnik gained experience as an intern for Advocate BroMenn Volunteer Services, where she completed an extensive research project on the history of the Brokaw School of Nursing at IWU.

During her senior year, Muchnik joined Miner Linnaeus Sherff Endowed Professor of Botany David Bollivar in his laboratory, where she worked on a project involving bacteriochlorophyll biosynthesis. When describing Muchnik’s work, Bollivar said, “She had a talent for seeing the greater picture while still focusing on the details needed for success in the laboratory.”

Through her fellowship, Muchnik will continue her passion for laboratory research in the Genetics Department at Yale. Her current thesis project explores how changes in regulatory regions of DNA can shed light on how genetics have driven the evolution of distinctly human aspects of brain function and development. To do so, she will study gene transcription and modification at different stages of a human brain’s development and compare her findings to the gene sequences found in non-human primates.

Muchnik has already conducted research in the Biomedical Engineering department at Yale, where she worked alongside a professor to develop a technique for single-cell cytokine secretion in real time, a process used to activate latent HIV cells for study in the lab.

See the full article here.

Congratulations, Sydney!

Jun 182018
Ticket sales are live for the play written by Aaron Harris Woodstein ’15 and Composed by Sam Mullooly ’16: “The Fires of Nero: Rise of a Dictator” at Stage 773 in Chicago. The play was inspired by a paper Aaron wrote in Dani Synder-Young’s Theatre History class where he argued that one of the prominent characters Seneca wrote a play protesting the despot at the time, Nero. Now Aaron is doing the same as author and lyricist. Amongst the two other IWU Alums is Luke McLoughlin ’15 as Music Director.
Join Aaron, Sam, and Luke August 30th through September 9th, 2018. You can find ticket sales and more information about the full production/premiere below:
Apr 022018

Tuesday, April 3rd is our day of giving at Illinois Wesleyan and this year’s theme is
Think Bigger! 
Not only is today a day for giving, it’s a day to celebrate IWU and all of the things that make it special.  Last year, our class had an impressive 45 donors, and we contributed $1,848. Let’s think bigger and surpass last year’s donors and dollars contributed! Think of the impact this can make for IWU students and their families!

Click here to learn more and to donate on Tuesday, April 3rd.
Help spread the word using #AllInForWesleyan and take advantage of our social media toolkit.