Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

A notable occasion

Professor composes music for inauguration

Professor William MacPherson plays the organ as Professor Delvyn Case directs.

Professor William MacPherson plays the organ as Professor Delvyn Case directs.

A special day calls for special music. So, Wheaton College Assistant Professor of Music Delvyn Case composed “Inaugural Fanfare” for the inauguration of President Dennis Hanno.

Case describes the piece as “a short fanfare for trumpet and organ, intended to herald the beginning of a new era in Wheaton’s history with enthusiasm and hope.”

“For over a millennium, composers have been writing pieces for institutions to celebrate major events. As the composer on Wheaton’s faculty, I wrote a piece for the dedication ceremony of the Mars Center for Science and Technology in 2011, and since that project was so well received, I offered to write a piece for the inauguration,” said Case, who is also the music director of the Great Woods Chamber Orchestra. [Read more...]

A work of heart

Professor emeritus, brother create ceremonial pieces

The maces and their makerFor the past two years, Professor of Psychology Emeritus David Wulff has been engaged in a project of the heart. With the help of his brother, Bernard—an architect, artist and woodworker—Wulff designed and created two ceremonial maces, symbols of authority used worldwide in formal processions at colleges and universities and on parliamentary occasions.

“They are my parting gift to Wheaton,” says Wulff, who retired in 2012 after 43 years at the college. The maces were used for the first time at the inauguration.

It was at his last Convocation that Wulff had an epiphany. Filling in as marshal for the ceremony, he carried a small, unassuming white baton. “I started thinking that Wheaton really needed a proper ceremonial mace, the ornamental descendant of the armor-piercing weapons once used to protect reigning monarchs,” he says.

Wulff wanted something worthy of the college he holds so dear. “Too many maces look like bedposts,” he says. After researching maces at other institutions, the brothers came up with the idea of a gyroscope to hold the college seal atop the mace. Guided by a picture of an antique gyroscope, Wulff created a prototype “constructed of embroidery hoops, gold paint, and a paper seal” that he presented to head administrators at Wheaton. [Read more...]

Driven by values

Dennis Hanno begins his journey with Wheaton

President Hanno sitting in the Office of Admission with his wife, Susan, their son, Ted, and daughter, Emily.

President Hanno sitting in the Office of Admission with his wife, Susan, their son, Ted, and daughter, Emily.

The major turning point in Dennis Hanno’s professional life coincided with the arrival of his first child, Ted.

He was presiding over a fast-growing accounting practice in a small community in upstate New York but questioning whether the professional path that he had imagined for himself was what he really wanted to be doing. It was a subject that he and his wife, Susan, had been discussing for some time.

“My analysis with Susan was that I really love working with people,” he said, recounting the conclusions that emerged from taking stock of what he liked about accounting and what was important to him for the future. “I love doing new things, and I love helping people to understand issues and ideas. Most of all, I knew that I wanted to help people improve their lives. And that led me to the idea of returning to college to earn a Ph.D.”

Within six months, Hanno had embarked on the journey to earn a Ph.D. and begin a career in academia that would take him from the suburbs of Boston to major cities in Europe and Asia to villages in Africa. [Read more...]

Campaign ends with historic success

Go Beyond: Campaign for Wheaton may be officially completed, but the college’s students will feel the impact of the effort for years to come.

Go Beyond, by the numbers


More than 220 new scholarships now exist to improve access to a Wheaton education through endowed funds and annual gifts.

$53.3 million

Wheaton Fund

The entire campus—from the library and technology to campus programming— received much-needed support through the Wheaton Fund.

$35.7 million 

Mars Science Center

We have state-of-the-art laboratories, classrooms and collaboration space in the Mars Center for Science and Technology.

$32.6 million

Student-Faculty Research

More opportunities are available for students to partner with professors on research projects, supported by new endowed funds for student-faculty collaborations.

$1.4 million

Nordin Field

There are new opportunities for intercollegiate, club and intramural sports at the Diane Nordin ’80 Athletic Field.

$3.8 million

Academic Programs

New programs and resources for students, including $2.4 million for academic and faculty support and $2.1 million for the Filene Center for Academic Advising and Career Services.

$10.6 million

The eight-year fundraising effort closed on June 30, 2014, with $137,614,399 in gifts and pledges to support student scholarship, faculty and academic programs, building new science and athletic facilities, and supporting myriad programs with annual contributions.

“We started the campaign with ambitious goals, and the generosity of the Wheaton community allowed us to accomplish every objective, and go beyond,” said Thomas Hollister, chair of the Wheaton Board of Trustees. “This extraordinary success has strengthened the quality of the programs and opportunities that we offer students, and has helped place a Wheaton education within reach for more families.”

The campaign’s $137 million final tally exceeded the original $120 million target that the Board of Trustees set for the campaign when it launched in 2006. Leading the effort was a centerpiece of former President Ronald A. Crutcher’s tenure.

“I will always be grateful for the commitment to Wheaton and to the value of the liberal arts shown by the thousands of alumnae and alumni, parents and friends through their generosity,” Crutcher said.

Leaders in guiding the effort shared his gratitude. “Wheaton’s campaign ended more than 10 percent over goal. That is a huge tribute to the motivation of all our donors, who clearly know the importance of the strong college education that Wheaton provides,” said Trustee Debra Kent Glidden ’68, a co-chair of the campaign steering committee. “I have been privileged to know many Wheaton students. I know that Wheaton makes a difference in each of their lives and that many students have made a difference in mine.”

The campaign elicited broad participation from the Wheaton community. More than 12,000 people contributed to the campaign, including 9,192 alumnae and alumni and 2,060 parents of students and graduates. Leadership contributions of $25,000 or more came from about 400 individuals, yet accounted for just over 90 percent of the total.

“The success of the campaign can be measured on so many levels. It isn’t only about the amount raised but the huge outpouring of support from Wheaton alumnae/i, parents and friends. It is also about the enthusiasm that has been generated in making Wheaton better and better,” said Trustee Nancy Pearlstine Conger ’67, a co-chair of the campaign. “All of this took place as the worldwide economy collapsed. The loyalty and commitment of the Wheaton community is extraordinary in good and bad times. So many stepped forward in so many ways that we truly did ‘go beyond.’”

Wheaton plans to celebrate the end of the campaign and pay tribute to everyone who made it a success during Homecoming Weekend. On the patio outside the Diana Davis Spencer ’60 Café, a plaque will be dedicated on Friday, October 17, in honor of the thousands of alumnae/i, parents and friends who contributed to the effort.