VOLUME 23 #2

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Your Thoughts

I must say, I am surprised to find myself writing a thank you to the editors of an alumni magazine. It’s true that the Messenger has been consistently excellent in content and presentation—so much so that my wife often picks it up and reads it before I do, even though she is not a UD alum—but that alone never drove me to sit down and send a thank you. No, what finally got me to send this email is one specific page in the [April 2015] edition–page 13–with its photo of Yasser Payne and what I assume is one of his research team members overwritten by the words “OUR FACULTY.” It is certainly pleasant to see pictures of UD professors and students (mostly white like me) in classrooms, labs or at events sporting UD colors etc., and I am often impressed by the breadth and scope of current research in numerous fields. But to see someone doing radically unconventional hands-on research addressing the real conditions of life in Wilmington and training street-level field workers in doctoral-level research methods to do the work—that fires the soul.

Rob Pierson, AS85, Albuquerque, NM

I started attending UD part-time in 1963, one of few “returning adult students,” as I had two little kids. Coming from another country, I did not even have a high school diploma to show, but they took me at my word that I had ranked #1 in my school and admitted me. I wanted to major in biology and found a supportive chairman and faculty. Those were different times: registration was in the field house where each department had several tables where you signed up for courses until they were full. Classes were small, most instructors were good and I enjoyed school. One evening I rode my bike to the library and was not allowed in because women had to wear skirts to the library and I was wearing slacks—that rule soon changed. The one time when I encountered overt discrimination was at a coffee for foreign students: After a pep-talk about us having come to the “land of opportunity for all,” I asked how medical schools could limit females to 3 percent of enrollment. The administrator replied, “But that is for a good reason—because women only want to go to med school to catch a doctor husband!” The changes and progress at UD are enormous: the Morris Library, all the additional buildings around the “mall” (now the “Green”), and now the great performing arts building. And the walks throughout campus - love them.

Iris Gonzalez, AS70, 76PhD, Newark, DE



Give us a piece of your mind

The UD Messenger welcomes letters to the editor and other comments about the magazine—what you like, dislike or would like to see changed. To comment on the magazine's content, we invite you to submit a letter, either by mail to UD Messenger, 105 East Main St., Newark, DE 19716, or by email to TheMessenger@udel.edu. Please include your full name, graduation year and contact information. Letters may be edited for length, clarity and style.

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