Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Unexpected gift

Gilman scholarship helps extend Oxford experience

Sarah Estrela 15

Sarah Estrela ’15 at the University of Oxford

For Sarah Estrela ’15, the Gilman scholarship arrived just in time.

Estrela had begun a yearlong study abroad program at the University of Oxford’s Lady Margaret Hall last October, but when she approached the spring term with limited funds and a spot on the Gilman scholarship waitlist, Estrela returned from Oxford early and began making plans to start her spring term at Wheaton on January 22.

On January 26, she received notice that she would be given the funding. It was an unexpected gift that would enable her to return to the university for a second and third term.

“The Gilman scholarship is the reason I have been able to continue pursuing this lifelong dream. Without it I would have had to end a unique and enriching chapter of my life in the most abrupt, heartbreaking way,” Estrela said. [Read more...]

Liquid assets

Senior wins grant to bring potable water to Guatemalan village

Jorge de Leon ’14A small village in Guatemala got potable water this summer, thanks to Jorge Clemente de Leon Miranda ’14. He won a $10,000 award from Projects for Peace to distribute water filters and to help villagers develop plans for replacing the filters on an annual basis.

“It is important that communities realize that they can bring change to themselves by effectively using the resources they already own,” de Leon Miranda said in his proposal.

A native of Guatemala, de Leon Miranda distributed inexpensive water filters in El Coyol that can produce as much as five gallons of purified water daily. In addition, he hosted a series of workshops and social events, partly inspired by his work as a resident advisor at Wheaton, to educate the people about how to use the filters and the importance of potable water.

The grant for the work comes from Projects for Peace, which provides funding for grassroots projects developed by students at colleges and universities that participate in the Davis United World Colleges program. The initiative was launched in 2007 by the late Kathryn Wasserman Davis, a noted philanthropist and the mother of Wheaton Trustee Emerita Diana Davis Spencer ’60, to support peace-promoting summer projects. [Read more...]

Listen up: Professor exploring Jesus in pop music

Delvyn CaseAssistant Professor of Music Delvyn Case, a composer of classical music, is a scholar who is most interested in popular music—in particular the intersections of popular music and religion in America. This fall, he is teaching the First-Year Seminar “Rock of Ages: Images of Jesus in Popular Music,” which explores provocative questions about those intersections. With such an intriguing title, we, of course, just had to know more.
[Read more...]

Sweet lesson

Alumnus returns to give talk on chocolate

Skye Paine '00Before bringing his lecture, “Heureux Chocolat: The History of Chocolate in France,” to Wheaton this spring, Skye Paine ’00 rehearsed the talk at home in front of his two children, ages 6 and 8. Impressively, they listened attentively to the hourlong lecture.

Then again, there was a bar of chocolate sitting in front of them the whole time.

Preparing to give the same talk to a room full of adults at Knapton Hall, Paine nodded to a table in the front piled with French chocolate bars and told his audience, “I think you will enjoy it at least as much as they did.”

It was a safe assumption.

Paine, who studied art history and French at Wheaton and now works as an assistant professor of French at SUNY–Brockport, was invited to speak at his alma mater by Professor of French Studies Kirk Anderson—the same man who convinced him as a freshman to major in French. [Read more...]