Photos from Europe

Luke Forsthoefel is studying at UCL in London this semester and has the photos to share from his travels.

In front of Tower Bridge in London.

Posing in front of the Thames and the Shard in the background in London.

Doing some climbing in an activity called Via Ferrata in the Lake District of Northern England.

West Minster Abbey

At the summit of a hike at Montserrat in Spain. The Pyrenees are in the background.

A nice view of Barcelona in Gaudí’s Parc Guel.

Thinking about Writing a Senior Thesis?

Thinking about writing a senior thesis? Not sure where to start? This panel discussion will provide you with an opportunity to gain insight from professors about how to prepare for writing a thesis, how to choose a topic, and what factors you should take into account when making the decision to undertake a thesis.

Whether you already know your topic, or are just beginning to explore the possibility of a thesis, now is a great time to start get your bearings.

Please join us in a conversation with Dean Phillips and Professors Sean McCann (English), Joe Rouse (Philosophy and Science in Society) and Martha Gilmore (Earth & Environmental Science) for insights into the whys and wherefores of undertaking a thesis.

Tuesday, December 4, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.
PAC 002

Please RSVP through this link.

Light refreshments will be provided.

Course Withdrawal Deadline this Friday 11/30 5pm

The last day to withdraw from full-semester and second-quarter classes for the Fall 2018 semester is Friday, November 30.  Completed forms are due in the Registrar’s Office by 5:00 p.m. and must include the following signatures: instructor, faculty advisor, and class dean.

If you are thinking about withdrawing from a course:

  • Do use this time to talk to your professors, your advisors, and me about your concerns. If you can’t make my drop-ins, please email me at or call me at x2757 to schedule an appointment.
  • Do make sure you are taking advantage of all the resources available to you.
  • Do get the signatures of your instructor and advisor on your drop/add form. I cannot sign for either without his or her permission, so please save yourself the trouble of waiting to see me during drop-ins just for me to tell you that.
  • Do not wait until Friday at 4:00 p.m. to see me or you may find yourself waiting in a very long line!

Drop-in Hours: M 2-3, Tu 3-4, W 4-6, Th 11-12, F 2-4

Evolution of Infectious Consumers and the Integrated Control of Schistosomiasis 12/3

Human schistosomiasis affects about 200-300 million people worldwide, with chronic morbidity and substantial mortality. Join evolutionary biologist Dr. Armand Kuris as he discusses the breakdown of coevolution and thresholds of transmission controls of public health mitigation of such diseases and shares his work in Kenya and Senegal, where his team has shown that transmission control through predation on the snail intermediate hosts may be necessary to achieve elimination of human schistosomiasis in Africa.

Dr. Kuris is the Charles Storke II Chair in Ecology and Professor of Zoology in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

RISE Professional Development Series for Students of Color

In solidarity with students of color, the Office for Student Activities and Leadership Development (SALD) and the Gordon Career Center are hosting a four-part professional development series for students of color interested in pursuing higher education–the Rise: Higher Education Leadership Series for People of Color.

Thursday 11/15, 5-7pm
RISE: Pre-Law Seminar featuring Shana Simmons ’03, Corporate Counsel at Google and Wesleyan Board of Trustee Member
Dinner will be provided at 5 pm, and the event will begin at 5:30! Register here:

Come be in community and hear from keynote speaker Shana Simmons ’03 discuss her lived experiences in pursuing higher education in the legal field: microaggressions, application processes, how to utilize your undergrad experience to the fullest extent, and more will be discussed!

Shana is a corporate counsel at Google Inc., where she manages a team that supports Google’s growing Cloud business and also brings her commitment to diversity and inclusion to the work place. Before Google, she was an associate at Cleary Gottlieb Stein and Hamilton LLP in its New York and London offices. Shana received a law degree from University of California, Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall), where she served as the diversity editor of the California Law Review, development editor of the Berkeley Journal of African American Law & Policy, and co-president of the Law Students of African Descent. While in law school, Shana also interned at the East Bay Community Law Center, where she focused on projects that would empower low-income communities of color to build long-term solutions to poverty through the advancement of community-owned cooperative businesses and affordable housing. Before law school, Shana taught for three years (one year in Washington, DC, at a public charter high school geared towards disadvantaged black youth and the next two years at the American Indian Public Charter School in Oakland, California, where her seventh-grade students received the highest scores in Alameda County on the standardized state math tests). Shana was recognized in 2009 for her work with Oakland youth with a proclamation from the Mayor of Oakland.

Shana has served on the boards of the YMCA of the East Bay and Harlem Week, Inc., and currently sits on the board of Lawyers for One America.

At Wesleyan: Shana was a College of Social Studies major and a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow. She was an active contributor to the student of color community on campus, served in leadership positions with Ujamaa, the Student of Color Council, and she also coordinated the Students of Color Pre-Frosh Weekend during her four years at Wesleyan, receiving the Vanguard Prize for her efforts. She was a resident advisor in Malcolm X House and WestCo, and the head resident of the Affinity Program Houses. She was also a senior interviewer.

Friday 11/16, 5-7pm, Gordon Career Center
RISE: Graduate School Seminar
Dinner will be provided at 5 pm, and the event will begin at 5:30! Register here:

Come be in community and hear from alum of color discuss their lived experiences in pursuing higher education health professions: microaggressions, application processes, how to utilize your undergrad experience to the fullest extent, and more will be discussed!

Panelists include:

Renee Johnson-Thornton ’05, PhD, Dean of Class of 2022 at Wesleyan University
Elsa Hardy ’14, Graduate Student at Harvard University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Julissa Pena ’12, Senior Registration & Financial Analyst, SSC, Office of the University Registrar at Columbia University
LaNell Williams ’15, Ph.D. Candidate Harvard University

McNair Program Recruiting STEM Majors

Eligibility Requirements

  • 2nd and 3rd-Year STEM majors who are interested in pursuing a PhD
  • US citizen or Permanent Resident
  • First-generation to attend college & low income and/or
  • Groups underrepresented in STEM fields (Hispanic/Latino, American Indian or Alaska Native, African American, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander; females not considered underrepresented)

Apply at:
Application review begins Friday, November 16.

Photos from China

Théo Storella is studying abroad in Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province in China, and has these photos to share.

These two images were both taken at a small city called XiZhou a few hours from Kunming. They show the entrances to two tie-die clothing factories, tie-die clothing is a traditional cultural characteristic unique to the Bai ethnic group of China which is the main ethnic group of XiZhou village.

CangShan Mountain which is close to the city of Dali. The mountain overlooks the city and is full of awe-inspiring views and narrow passes with petrifying stone overhangs that look like they could easily collapse on top of you.

A photo from XiShan Mountain which is just outside of Kunming. Théo and a few friends climbed the mountain in the early morning just in time to see the sun rise. Théo took this photo of a friend as he gazed meditatively at the city below. Climbing that mountain in the morning as well as the night before were both unforgettable experiences because of the beautiful views as well as the treacherous trek up an unmarked path to the summit which was intensely slippery since it had just rained.

This photo is from the summit of XiShan at night, we climbed after night had fallen and the rain had stopped, using our phones for flashlights and doing our best not to fall into the mud or onto the sharp rocks near the summit. We met a few fellow hikers who helped us hike safely, and we shared celebratory snacks and cigarettes once we reached the top.

These photos are from a recent trip to the Stone Forest just outside of Kunming. The Stone Forest is one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites and is something that needs to be seen to be believed. The stone forest was formed millions of years ago through the erosion of limestone, leaving building-sized, tooth-shaped formations of rock that form a maze of paths which tourists can walk through. The two first pictures are of Théo looking in disbelief at the sheer size of the formations, the third is of a particularly cool mushroom-looking one, the fourth is from a point where the expanse of the Stone Forest can be seen, and the last photo is of a narrow pass formed by rock formations colliding with each other leaving a tight road to one can pass through.

Junior Class Dinner with Professor Richard Adelstein

The Dean’s Office will be hosting a Typhoon-catered dinner for members of the Class of 2020 with Professor Richard Adelstein (Economics and the College of Social Studies) on Thursday, November 8, from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in the Daniel Family Commons.  As Professor Adelstein writes in his faculty bio:

My teaching and scholarly interests lie at the intersection of economics, law, history and philosophy. More particularly, I’m interested in the historical development of social institutions like markets, firms and common law and the problem of how social order is created and maintained in various environments and changes as those environments change.

I was not a successful undergraduate, and left MIT in 1968 with a bachelor’s degree in history and engineering. I earned a master’s degree in teaching and, in 1970-71, taught junior-high level history at two Massachusetts state prisons. This drew me to a career in corrections, and I set out to become a lawyer, so I could become a prison warden. But upon entering law school, I was given a chance to get a PhD in economics as well, and began study of both these subjects for the first time. So I was an interdisciplinarian from the start, and received both a JD and a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania in 1975. A one-year job at Wesleyan was the only offer I received, and I’ve been here ever since. Teaching only very talented and critically minded undergraduates, I’ve been able to develop these interdisciplinary interests across a range of fields and in pursuit of a more or less constant fascination with the evolution of similar or cognate social institutions across different environments, time and cultures.

If you would like to attend this dinner with Professor Adelstein, please RSVP through this link.  Seating is limited to the first 30 students who RSVP.  You will be notified if there will not be enough room for you to attend.