Hollins Partners With City of Roanoke For Art By Bus, Writer By Bus Programs

Hollins is helping promote the value of public transportation to the Roanoke Valley by bringing visual arts and inspired writing onto the area’s bus network.

The university has joined RIDE Solutions, the Roanoke Arts Commission, and the Greater Roanoke Transit Company in presenting the annual Art By Bus and Writer By Bus programs, which this year showcase the talents of Hollins undergraduate and graduate students.

JM Lamb
Horizon student JM Lamb, whose design, “Wishes,” was selected for the fifth annual Art By Bus Program.

Associate Professor of Art Jennifer Printz led one of her classes in creating a series of original works, one of which would be selected to be installed on an entire half of a Valley Metro bus. “Wishes” by Horizon student JM Lamb (pictured above) was chosen by representatives of Hollins, RIDE Solutions, and the Arts Commission to be displayed this year.

Lucy Marcus, who is pursuing an M.F.A. in creative writing at Hollins, was selected through a competitive process by a panel of arts commission and community members as this year’s Writer By Bus. She will ride various buses throughout April and May to produce literary works about her experiences, the people she meets, and the neighborhoods she visits. Her chronicles can be followed on the Writer By Bus Facebook page. Marcus’ final works will appear on the RIDE Solutions webpage this fall.

“These are exciting opportunities for our students not only to be involved in promoting this vital public service, but also to see an example of how the arts can be used to draw attention and change perceptions about important issues in our community,” said Hollins President Pareena Lawrence.

Kevin Price, general manager of the Greater Roanoke Transit Company, added, “We hope to make the role of public transit more visible, and to make the experience of taking the bus more exciting.”

Lucy Marcus
Hollins graduate student and teaching fellow Lucy Marcus is this year’s Writer By Bus.

Lamb’s design (along with works from the City of Roanoke’s public arts collection that will be displayed on the exterior of two other Valley Metro buses) was officially unveiled at an event on the Hollins campus on April 18. “My intention with this project was to create an image that invokes memories and feelings that instill joy, transcending age, race, and cultural differences, as well as socioeconomic class inequalities. In short, something for everyone,” Lamb explained. “Initially when most of us think of dandelion seed ‘puffs,’ we can mentally scroll back to childhood and the hours spent stalking the yard for an intact ‘puff’ to blow in the wind. So simple and satisfying was this playful task, the thought of it produces a smile on most of our faces.”

Marcus, who was recognized with Lamb at the event, noted, “I feel very lucky to live here, where our city workers and elected officials who do the difficult and vital work of keeping the transit circulating also create such rich programming to integrate and support the arts. I look forward to riding and writing with my eyes and heart open.”

Learn more about this year’s Art By Bus and Writer By Bus programs in this Roanoke Times article.

Virginia’s Blue Ridge Trailsetter Series features the Art By Bus program in this segment on local art in the Roanoke Valley.

 


Hollins Honors Earth Day, Arbor Day with Free Tree Seedlings

UPDATE (04/15/2019): We’re pleased to announce that all the available tree seedlings have been claimed. Thanks to the campus community for your enthusiastic response!

The Hollins Tree Committee is celebrating Earth Day (April 22) and National Arbor Day (April 26) by giving away free tree seedlings this month to members of the campus community.

“The tree committee has sponsored numerous tree plantings on campus, most recently on March 18 along Carvin Creek during our annual Hollins Tree Planting Day,” said Assistant Professor of Biology Elizabeth Gleim, who serves as the faculty representative on the Tree Committee. “Now we’re hoping to make an impact beyond our campus.”

The seedlings are available to any faculty member, staff member, or commuter student who has a place to plant a tree. Nine different tree species are available through April 18, or while supplies last: red maple, silver maple, bald cypress, river birch, persimmon, black walnut, black cherry, silky dogwood (a shrub), and red osier dogwood (also a shrub). The seedlings are approximately one to two feet in length.

Members of the campus community can contact Gleim at egleim@hollins.edu to arrange a time for pick-up. There is a limit of two seedlings per individual.

 

Photo: Approximately 40 students, faculty, staff, and their family members took part in the annual Hollins Tree Planting Day in March. The group planted 90 seedlings along Carvin Creek on the Hollins campus. The work was an effort to mitigate the loss of the nearly 100 ash trees along the creek that are dying due to infestation by the emerald ash borer. The trees planted are all native to Virginia and well-adapted to the soggy soil along the creek, and include river birch, silver maple, and silky dogwood.

 

 


Hollins, Virginia Western Announce Guaranteed Admission Agreements

Hollins University and Virginia Western Community College have established Guaranteed Admission Agreements (GAA) for graduates of four Associate of Science programs from Virginia Western.

Students who obtain a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 in academically transferable courses and complete all requirements for Associate of Science degrees in business administration, general studies, social sciences, or social sciences – education, are guaranteed admission to Hollins.

“Hollins and Virginia Western recognize the need to partner and facilitate the path for women who seek to earn a four-year college degree and transfer their credits seamlessly into the Hollins curriculum and degree programs,” said Hollins President Pareena Lawrence. “Our GAAs will empower more students to continue their undergraduate education at an institution that prepares women to succeed in all sectors of society with an emphasis on leadership, life skills, and professional development.”

Lawrence noted that Guaranteed Admission Agreements students who enroll at Hollins will enjoy a number of benefits. “They are eligible for admission to competitive programs, financial aid, scholarships, parking, housing, and all other student services just as any other Hollins student. And, GAA students with a minimum of 58 credits will be given junior status and can enroll directly into 200 level courses or higher at Hollins.”

At a signing ceremony on Friday at Virginia Western, President Robert H. Sandel shared his excitement regarding the new agreements with a group of students. “Hollins is an outstanding university and has always been a wonderful partner for Virginia Western. These new agreements will give our students another pathway to seamlessly transfer and continue their education in pursuit of a strong career,” he said.

All of the courses that are accepted by Hollins will be applied towards the student’s baccalaureate degree and major program. A minimum grade of “C” must be obtained in each course the student wishes to transfer. GAA students can expect to graduate from Hollins with a baccalaureate degree after the successful completion of a minimum of 64 credits, two four-credit Short Term activities (classes, trips, independent study, or internships), and two physical education courses.

Moving forward, Lawrence said Hollins will provide up-to-date information to GAA students at Virginia Western pertaining to transfer procedures, financial assistance, housing policies, tuition and fee payments, and deadlines. Hollins will also develop a GAA guide for use by counselors, faculty, and students at Virginia Western.

Hollins is an independent liberal arts university offering undergraduate education for women, selected graduate programs for men and women, and community outreach initiatives. Founded in 1842, Hollins features nationally recognized programs in creative writing and theatre, extensive internship and study abroad opportunities, and a dedicated alumnae network.

Virginia Western Community College is a forward-thinking community college inspiring individual, community, and economic transformation. It provides quality educational opportunities that empower students for success and strengthen communities. The college provides credit based academic programs and non-credit workforce training along with distance learning online and dual enrollment courses in area high schools. To learn more, visit www.virginiawestern.edu.

Photo: Flanked by Virginia Western Community College students, Virginia Western President Robert Sandel and Hollins President Pareena Lawrence sign the Guaranteed Admission Agreements between the two institutions. 


VTCSOM’s “The Influence of Women” Exhibition Showcases Hollins Artists

Works by Hollins University students highlight a new exhibition that explores and celebrates the many ways women affect their worlds.

Students in Associate Professor of Art Jennifer Printz’s Intaglio Printmaking class have contributed their creativity to “The Influence of Women,” which is on display at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine (VTCSOM) through March 1, 2019.

“Each student produced two amazing prints about women who have influenced them from friends, to family, to fictional heroines,” Printz explains.

The focus of the show was developed in appreciation for VTCSOM’s founding dean, Cynda Johnson, who is retiring at the end of this year.

Sponsored by VTCSOM’s Creativity in Healthcare Education program, “The Influence of Women” is one of three exhibitions held annually for local artists to showcase their works to the community and to reinforce to medical students the importance of having a community connection.

VTCSOM is located at 2 Riverside Circle in Roanoke.

 

Image: Rachel Jackson Hikaru, dry-point print with watercolor, 2018.


Submission Deadline for 2019 Margaret Wise Brown Prize Is Jan. 15

Publishers of picture books released in 2018 are invited to have their works considered for the 2019 Margaret Wise Brown Prize in Children’s Literature. The deadline for submissions is January 15, 2019.

Presented annually, the Margaret Wise Brown Prize recognizes the author of the best text for a picture book published during the previous year. The award is a tribute to one of Hollins University’s best-known alumnae and one of America’s most beloved children’s authors. Winners are given a $1,000 cash prize, which comes from an endowed fund created by James Rockefeller, Brown’s fiancé at the time of her death. Each recipient will also receive an engraved bronze medal as well as an invitation to accept the award and present a reading on campus during the summer session of Hollins’ graduate programs in children’s literature.

Judges for the 2019 prize include:

  • Elaine Magliaro, author of the 2018 Margaret Wise Brown Prize-winning book Things to Do.
  • Laura Kvasnosky, author of Little Wolf’s First Howling, the 2018 Margaret Wise Brown Prize Honor Book.
  • B. Lewis, a five-time Coretta Scott King Award-winning illustrator of over 70 books for children.

The publisher should submit four copies of each book they wish to nominate for the Margaret Wise Brown Prize: one copy to Hollins University and one copy to each of the three judges. Books must have been first published in 2018; reprints are not eligible. The winner will be announced in May 2019.

Please contact Lisa Rowe Fraustino at fraustinolr@hollins.edu for the judges’ addresses and further submission instructions.

The study of children’s literature as a scholarly experience was initiated at Hollins in 1973; in 1992, the graduate program in children’s literature was founded. Today, Hollins offers summer M.A. and M.F.A. programs exclusively in the study and writing of children’s literature, an M.F.A. in children’s book writing and illustrating, and a graduate-level certificate in children’s book illustration.

 


Hollins Connections Highlight Special Stage Event at Mill Mt. Theatre

Roanoke’s Mill Mountain Theatre (MMT) is paying tribute to a member of the Hollins University graduate program faculty by staging one of her acclaimed works for a special fundraising event.

On Saturday, November 10, MMT is presenting the play A Simple Gift by Nancy Ruth Patterson, who teaches in Hollins’ M.F.A. program in children’s book writing and illustrating and is celebrated for her creativity and devotion to her community. The goal of the fundraiser is to supplement generous grants from the Fishburn Foundation and the Helen S. and Charles G. Patterson, Jr. Charitable Foundation Trust to renovate MMT’s Waldron Stage into a “green space” venue. Tickets are $100 per person and can only be purchased in advance by contacting events@millmountain.org. A portion of the ticket price will be a tax-exempt charitable gift to MMT.

A Simple Gift earned recognition as “A love song to the theatre…a love song to life” when it was first produced at MMT nearly a decade ago. The play is the story of two former residents of fictional Brownsville, North Carolina – one who found fame on Broadway and the other who became a children’s writer – who accept an invitation from an old teacher to return to their hometown to put on a performance as a gift to the place that raised them both.

Hollins President Emerita Nancy Gray is among the prominent Roanoke citizens who will be appearing in the play alongside some of MMT’s top veteran actors and several young local actors who are starting their careers.

The one-night-only performance of A Simple Gift will be preceded by a supper of favorites from Chanticleer Catering and an open bar beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the Atrium of Center in the Square.

 


Hollins, Roanoke College Announce Perry F. Kendig Award Nominees

Artists, arts advocates, and arts and cultural organizations are among the nominees for the 2018 Perry F. Kendig Arts and Culture Awards.

Co-sponsored by Hollins University and Roanoke College, the Kendig Awards program recognizes exemplary individuals, businesses, and organizations in the Roanoke Valley that support excellence in the arts.

This year’s winners will be announced at Hollins University’s Wyndham Robertson Library on Wednesday, Sept. 12, at 5:30 p.m.

Here are the nominees for the 2018 Kendig Awards:

  • Nancy Agee
    Agee is the president and CEO of Carilion Clinic and president of the American Hospital Association. She has supported artists, performers and educators in the Roanoke Valley for more than 30 years.
  • Artemis, Artists & Writers, Inc.
    A publisher of literary and art journals, and host of local exhibitions and events for 40 years, Artemis has showcased literary and visual artists from Southwest Virginia and beyond. Recent publications have introduced the culture of the Roanoke Valley to Europe, Australia and Asia, and their free workshops, internships and festivals have inspired creativity and fellowship for all ages and all levels of experience.
  • Rita Bishop
    As the superintendent for Roanoke City Public Schools (RCPS), Bishop has fostered partnerships with Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, Opera Roanoke, the Jefferson Center, Southwest Virginia Ballet and others. Through her leadership, advocacy and service, leaders from the VH1 Save the Music Foundation have supported RCPS programs with hundreds of thousands of dollars.
  •  Dotsy Clifton
    For more than four decades, Clifton has supported many of the region’s arts organizations. As a volunteer, she has served on the board of directors of The Roanoke Women’s Foundation, The Grandin Theatre, Center in the Square and Mill Mountain Theatre, where she was board chair. Clifton has been praised as a true conduit, realizing that the arts and history of this region humanize and connect its citizens in many ways.
  • Doug Jackson
    Jackson first became involved in Roanoke’s arts and cultural scene with the Roanoke Arts Commission. He played a key role in developing the city’s first Arts and Cultural Plan as well as Book City Roanoke, and has volunteered for Roanoke Valley Reads and CityWorks (X)po. He is also a published author who has won the James Andrew Purdy Prize for Fiction and the Artisan Center of Virginia’s Award for Excellence.
  • Jefferson Center
    A premier performance venue, educational hub, and center for community life, the Jefferson Center’s mission is to provide broad access to inspirational performing arts, transformative arts education, and vibrant community space. Its Music Lab program, which offers music education to students of all ages, is a nationally recognized model for arts education beyond the classroom. The Jefferson Center also is home to more than 15 regional nonprofits and small businesses.
  • Cynthia and Mark Lawrence
    The Lawrences have connected arts organizations with business and have helped both succeed on projects that yield community-wide benefits. Their participation in organizations such as Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, and the Taubman Museum of Art have positively impacted the culture of the Roanoke Valley and brought together countless artists and other influential Roanokers.
  • Amanda Mansfield
    Mansfield has made a major impact on the Roanoke theater scene for more than 12 years. She has performed for numerous production companies in the area, and has led successful program development and fundraising efforts for Roanoke Children’s Theatre, Center in the Square and Mill Mountain Theatre. She was responsible for significant increases in the annual operating budgets for all three organizations.
  • Maury Strauss
    Strauss’s support of and dedication to arts and culture in Roanoke spans a broad spectrum, including the Taubman Museum of Art, The Jefferson Center, Roanoke Children’s Theatre (which he helped establish), Opera Roanoke, Temple Emanuel, Mill Mountain Theatre, Virginia Western Community College and many other organizations. Through Strauss’s generosity, the Taubman has created the Sheila and Maury L. Strauss Art Venture Endowment.
  • Margaret Sue Turner Wright
    Having curated a dozen art shows and establishing organizations such as Plein Air Roanoke and 202 Figurative Group, Wright has welcomed hundreds of artists, patrons, and enthusiasts to Roanoke. Locally, she has donated many of her paintings to auctions that have raised several thousand dollars for hospitals and arts institutions. She has also donated paintings for charity fundraising events around the country, including Back to the Roots, hosted by Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Named for the late Perry F. Kendig, who served as president of Roanoke College and was an avid supporter and patron of the arts, the Kendig Awards were established in 1985 and presented annually by the Arts Council of the Blue Ridge through 2012. Hollins University and Roanoke College first partnered the following year to bestow the honors, and congratulate the 2018 slate of distinguished nominees.

For more information about the Kendig Awards, visit https://kendig.press.hollins.edu/.


Hollins, Roanoke College Seek Nominations for the 2018 Kendig Awards

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2018 Perry F. Kendig Arts and Culture Awards, which recognize individuals, businesses, and organizations in the greater Roanoke region that provide exemplary leadership in or support for the arts.

The deadline for nominations is Monday, July 16. The nomination form and other information can be found at https://kendig.press.hollins.edu/.

Hollins University and Roanoke College have co-sponsored the awards since 2013. The 2018 Kendig Awards will be presented on Wednesday, September 12, from 5:30 – 7 p.m. at Lorimer House on the Hollins campus.

Three Kendig Awards will be presented this year, one in each of the following categories:

  • Individual Artist (selected from all disciplines, including dance, literature, music, media arts, visual arts, and theatre)
  • Arts and/or Cultural Organization
  • Individual or Business Supporter

Individuals, businesses, and organizations from the greater Roanoke region (which includes the counties of Botetourt, Franklin, and Roanoke, the cities of Roanoke and Salem, and the town of Vinton) are eligible, as are past Kendig Award recipients from 1985 – 2012.

“The Kendig Awards program provides a focal point for celebrating the greater Roanoke region’s cultural identity,” said Hollins President Pareena Lawrence. “This initiative enables all of us to realize and appreciate the vital role arts and culture play in economic development as well as education in our schools.”

“Presenting this annual program builds an even stronger arts and culture bridge between our campuses and the community,” added Roanoke College President Mike Maxey. “We are proud to join with Hollins to champion this celebration of the arts.”

Named for the late Perry F. Kendig, who served as president of Roanoke College and was an avid supporter and patron of the arts, the awards were presented by the Arts Council of the Blue Ridge for 27 years.


GWS Major to Help Further Awareness, Deliver Resources to Stop Intimate Partner Violence

Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is a worldwide health problem whose prevalence is staggering. The American Psychological Association notes that in the United States alone:

  • More than one in three women and more than one in four men have experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
  • Seventy-four percent of all murder-suicides involved an intimate partner (spouse, common-law spouse, ex-spouse, or boyfriend/girlfriend). Of these, 96 percent were women killed by their intimate partners.
  • One in five female high school students reports being physically and/or sexually abused by a dating partner.
  • IPV is the leading cause of female homicides and injury-related deaths during pregnancy.
  • The percentage of women who consider their mental health to be poor is almost three times higher among women with a history of violence than among those without.
  • Women with disabilities have a 40 percent greater risk of IPV, especially severe violence, than women without disabilities.

Compounding the crisis, IPV is “underreported, underrecognized, and underaddressed” by healthcare professionals, according to a 2016 article in American Family Physician.

However, one organization has been a catalyst for growing awareness of IPV and providing resources to those who experience it, particularly young people who have suffered from dating abuse and domestic violence. For the past 15 years, Day One has delivered crucial education and services to the youth of New York City. To date, the non-profit has educated more than 75,000 young people on ways to “identify and maintain healthy relationships, obtain legal protection when necessary, and assist others experiencing abuse.”

During January Short Term this year, Whitney McWilliams ’18, a gender and women’s studies (GWS) major and social justice minor who graduated in May, interned with Day One. “More than anything I think the internship showed me the bridge between theory and practice.”

McWilliams was responsible for planning and facilitating the You(th) Already Know! Conference for New York City Youth and Adult Allies. “We gathered to explore themes of healthy relationships, self-defense, self-care, and race/class/gender issues that intersect with the violence of intimate relationships,” she explains. Day One was so impressed with her work that they have invited her to return to the organization this summer.

For McWilliams, working with Day One gave her the chance to draw upon what she had learned as a GWS major.

“GWS changed my outlook on life. It made me critical and challenging. It made me aware of my suffering that in turn made me angry. With that awareness there was fire, but that fire energized me in a way that healed me from the burn-out that was essential to my journey. That energy showed me the healing potential for love and compassion. It showed me the potential for our worlds and for our sociopolitical transcendence – a movement for peace and against suffering. It also showed me my personal potential for growth and that I am the embodiment of all that I have learned.”

Another pivotal moment during McWilliams’ career at Hollins was her pioneering work in helping launch the Hollins Heritage Committee, a group of students, faculty, and staff dedicated to promoting campus-wide dialogue on issues of collective memory, diversity, and reconciliation. “The committee is tasked with bringing the popular history of Hollins to the forefront. It is to decolonize knowledge and bring to the people the truths of Hollins’ history, most specifically Hollins’ relationship to slavery and race relations on campus. Theirs is a voice that is needed for those who have been silenced by the institution.

“I will be checking in to make sure the committee moves to incorporate the voices of staff and employees as they point to class exploitation, as well as trans and non-binary voices as they speak to Hollins’ investment in gender hierarchy, and the voices of natives as Hollins occupies sacred land.”


Rising Senior’s Summer Destination is Costa Rica for Animal Rescue

The parents of Lilly Potter ’19 know their daughter has serious case of wanderlust, so their gift to her last Christmas was a no-brainer: they were kind enough to present her with a free airline flight they had recently won in a contest. Combining her love of travel with another passion, community service, Potter set out to find a destination where she says she “could get my hands dirty and make a difference. I wasn’t interested in a typical voluntourist experience.”

This summer, Potter will be spending nearly two weeks volunteering with the Costa Rica Animal Rescue Center (CRARC), and her excitement about this opportunity has been so contagious, her younger sister is joining her on the trip.

“Costa Rica is globally recognized for its biodiversity: one in every 20 plant or animal species can be found there,” the double-major in English and international studies explains. “Unfortunately, due to human actions, Costa Rica also has over 100 species on the endangered list. Luckily, there are organizations seeking to combat this threat. I researched thoroughly to find one that was ethical and genuinely service-oriented.”

Potter discovered the nonprofit CRARC in the town of Cebadilla, which is located close to San Jose, Costa Rica’s capital and largest city.  “Their mission is to rescue animals who are victims of pollution, logging, electrical lines, illegal pet trade, and human cruelty.”

The story of Ghandi, a male spider monkey that CRARC saved, particularly touched Potter. “Ghandi was held captive in a bar and force-fed alcohol, coffee, and cigarette butts by tourists. By the time CRARC rescued him, he was in poor shape and addicted to nicotine. But thanks to the dedicated care of staff and volunteers, he’s getting the assistance and rehabilitation he needs. When he is fully recovered he will be released back into the wild.”

CRARC relies heavily on volunteers to augment the work of its small number of permanent staff. Potter will be involved with food preparation, cleaning and maintaining enclosures, building toys, and providing enrichment for the animals, among other responsibilities. This spring, she got a head-start on her duties by conducting a bake sale on campus to raise funds for purchasing milk substitutes. In addition, she collected donations of comfort and enrichment items to share with CRARC’s youngest and therefore most vulnerable animals.

Potter also applied for and received a grant from Hollins University’s Hobbie Trust Fund, which provides financial assistance for experiential learning opportunities to students involved in a research or service project that is clearly connected to ethics or values.

“I believe this program offers a valuable experience that touches on all the aspects at the heart of a Hollins education: environmental sustainability, intercultural understanding, leadership, and service,” Potter says. “My goals are to provide much-needed support to a reputable organization, and gain firsthand experience of the inner workings of an international nonprofit.

“Ultimately, I want to share these experiences with the Hollins community to inspire a greater awareness of our ethical imperative to conserve and protect the wildlife of Costa Rica and the world.”