Fall 2012

A Time of Change

It has been a tumultuous couple of weeks at Carolina, to say the least. Chancellor Holden Thorp's announcement that he would step down at the end of this academic year took us all by surprise. The University community reacted with an outpouring of support for a chancellor widely regarded as a visionary leader. In the days and weeks since Chancellor Thorp's decision, I have given a lot of thought to the tremendous contributions he has made to graduate education at Carolina.

Hello, World!

Carolina graduate alumni are making an impact around the globe — just follow the blue “footprints” and see. New enhancements to our “Tar Heel Footprints” map make it even easier for you to add your own footprint, update your information or view footprints of other alumni, both near and far, by program or school.

Accomplished Scientist Is New Royster Society Director

David W. Pfennig, a faculty member in the UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Biology since 1996, has been appointed the Caroline H. and Thomas S. Royster Distinguished Professor for Graduate Education.

The appointment is for a three-year term. In his new role, Pfennig directs the Royster Society of Fellows, the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School's most selective fellowship program.

If You See Them on Campus, Please Say ‘Hi’

Nineteen new graduate students from around the world are beginning their first semester at UNC-Chapel Hill with five-year fellowships in the Royster Society of Fellows.

The new Royster Fellows were recruited from places as diverse as Jamaica and Japan. Their research interests are also diverse: deep-sea microbiology, early Christianity, the intersection of finance and international development, and education policy, to name a few areas.

Among Her Most Valued Discoveries: A Love for Teaching

Nakia C. Best, a first-year doctoral student, has been awarded a prestigious scholarship from a national program focused on alleviating the nurse faculty shortage and enhancing diversity among nurse educators.

Best was one of five nursing students nationwide to receive the Minority Nurse Faculty Scholarship; the Johnson & Johnson Campaign for Nursing’s Future provides funding for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)-administered program.

From The Fountain: Readers Report 'Degrees' of Fulfillment

In spring 2012, The Graduate School posed the following question to readers of The Fountain: “Did your graduate degree take you in unexpected directions?”

Some alumni said yes and some said no. But it was clear that they all enjoyed their unique journeys.

McKinney's Support Motivates Son to Reach Paralympic Goals

Nancy McKinney, director of admissions and enrolled students for The Graduate School, and her son Josh McKinney recount Josh's journey to the 2012 Paralympics in London this August with the U.S. Paralympic soccer team. He started playing with the team in 1995 and traveled with them to the games in Atlanta and Athens.

‘Being afraid is useful…’

Carolina doctoral alumnus Marc Levoy inspired May 2012 doctoral graduates with his keynote address:

“Being afraid is useful. On the savannah it kept us from being eaten by lions. Nevertheless, this is the message I'd like to leave you with, the same message my mentor Don Greenberg gave to me. Know your fears, know also what you really want, weigh the odds, and occasionally, make a run for it.” Read or view his full address.

Questions? Suggestions for future stories? Please contact Deb Saine at saine@email.unc.edu