Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Go forth and be a force, Curry encourages graduates

On a gloriously sunny day, 405 students from the Class of 2010 completed their journey through Wheaton and headed out into the world, as family, friends and the college community wished them well.

Commencement 2010 capsNBC “Today” show anchor Ann Curry had plenty of words of encouragement to offer them during her Commencement address. She stressed that the tough economy is no reason to back away from dreams and that now is the time for graduates to realize their power as a force for good in the world.

“I know many of you are fearful about graduating in this very tough economy. You may be worrying about finding jobs in your chosen fields....You are here for a reason. Listen to your heart to find out what that reason is. And once you find it, stay true to it. We all know this economic downturn will end. The key is to be ready,” Curry said.

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Giant steps

Relay for Life

Joshua Begley ’10 has participated in every Relay For Life event at Wheaton since enrolling as a freshman. But this year was more personal than ever. When he stepped up to the microphone at Haas Athletic Center to deliver his last opening remarks as a senior, he paid tribute to his grandmother, a cancer survivor.

“My earliest memories of my grandma are of me playing Candyland with her. Years later I found out that she always let me win. I guess, at the time, I just thought I was a kick-ass Candyland player,” he began.

One week after his speech, she would pass away.

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A is for app

Want to turn your B into an A by the end of the semester?
No problem. There’s an app for that.

Stephen MathisProfessor of Philosophy Stephen Mathis and Gregory Williams ’02, one of Mathis’s former students, have developed a grade management software application that is now available for sale through iTunes.

It is called GradeUNeed and it’s for the iPhone or iPad. The app helps students calculate how well they need to perform on remaining tests, papers and assignments to achieve a desired grade in a course by the end of a particular semester.

Users can get the big picture for the entire semester, as well as see what grade is needed on each assignment to reach an A, B, C, or, yikes, a D, by selecting the appropriate buttons. They also can track multiple courses at once.

“Let’s say you have a D after the first quiz,” explains Mathis, “the app will tell you what you need to score on the next assignment to pull it up to an A. And it continues to do that for each subsequent assignment.”

The trick is not to slip too deeply into a hole before using the app to figure out how to get out.

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Professors win fellowships to enrich scholarship

Two Wheaton faculty members have won fellowships that will further their scholarship and in turn enrich the classes they teach.

The Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation has awarded fellowships to Assistant Professor of Computer Science Tom Armstrong and Assistant Professor of Art History Sean McPherson.

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