February 2011 | Vol 3 Issue 1

      Alumni Newsletter
Some Enchanted Evening

UDC National Alumni Society
Board of Directors Meeting
Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011
Bldg. 39 Board Room
Call 202.274.5206

The Black Exhibition
Now through Mar. 31, 2011
Features work of two UDC alumni artists — Jacqueline V. Lee and Daniel T. Brooking For more information contact:  Daniel T. Booking

Alumni Stories, Updates
The Office of Alumni Relations wants to share your good news!  Send stories and updates to Jackie Thompson

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The "Flame on the Fly" is a monthly e-publication produced by the Office of Alumni Relations. Please feel free to submit comments, story ideas and inquiries to alumni@udc.edu

What becomes a legend most? A glittering evening of entertainment, fine food and wine, elegant surroundings and a story so exciting, it's taken 160 years to tell. On Saturday, January 29, we kicked off our milestone anniversary in grand style at the Mellon Auditorium, where members of the university community mingled with the District leaders in government, law, business and philanthropy. MC'd by ABC7 anchor Maureen Bunyan, the celebration included live performances by the UDC Chorale, The Voices, The UDC Jazztet and selections from the UDC Jazz Ensemble DVD. Speakers included President Allen Sessoms, board chair Joseph L. Askew, Jr. ’98 and UDC's biggest, most unabashed fan, Mayor Vincent Gray. To help tell the story, vignettes anchoring the room imaginatively showcased 160 years of scholarship and achievement as depicted by all the schools and colleges, alumni and advancement and athletics. Photos and videos of the event will be posted online soon. Major kudos to Lee Brian Reba, director of special projects and events, for conceiving this evening and bringing it passionately to life. Check the 160th Web pages for updates on future anniversary activities.

Campus News

After its first year of operation, CCDC has moved its central location to a brand new, state-of-the-art facility at 801 N. Capitol St. NE, just two blocks from Union Station. CCDC has also expanded operations in the former Bertie Backus Middle School site on South Dakota Avenue NE, where our renowned and expanding nursing program will reside. There are plans to develop the Backus site as a School of Allied Health, serving both the University and the community college.

The University of the District of Columbia continues to grow with a new College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES) on our Van Ness Campus.  CAUSES will soon become the national leader in educating students on issues of urban sustainability and in conducting research in water quality management and green initiatives. People are noticing the new energy that is UDC. From the far reaches of our region to Capitol Hill and across the globe, the new UDC carries promise for our new urban environment.

Van Ness Renovation
The Van Ness campus is undergoing a significant and historic renovation. We are transforming this university from the ground up, creating an atmosphere that welcomes our community to be a part of the new UDC.  From green roofs to more appealing green campus spaces with energy efficient, recycled water falls, we invite you to be a part of this transformation.

We are bringing the University students the best possible college experience. That means living on campus. Just this year, UDC partnered with a local firm that manages an apartment building across the street from the University’s main campus. This has resulted in nearly 100 students being able to live near the University for the current semester, and we are exploring ways to expand those student-housing opportunities. There are plans to build residence halls directly on the Van Ness campus with an expected completion date of 2013.

Go Firebirds!
In the area of sports, look for the Firebirds to continue their upward climb and for the University to continue offering programs to benefit our student athletes. Facilities are being upgraded, and we are bringing the best talent to our efforts. We look forward to great performances by our existing teams this season with much more to come in the future as we proceed with the development of, among others, lacrosse, women’s crew and men’s football programs.

The Firebird is rising here at the University of the District of Columbia. As the only public university in the District, and the only urban land-grant university in America, we have a unique mission and a unique responsibility. Please visit our website: udc.edu to discover everything we’re doing and ways in which you can participate in America’s urban land-grant university.

Alumni News

Great People . . . Wonderful Evening . . . Homecoming 2010!
The 2010 UDCNAS Alumni Dinner Dance lived up to the hype! The 130-member guest list included alumni, President Sessoms, UDC administrators, students and friends of UDC. They talked, laughed and danced the balmy November night away at Ft. McNair Officers Club. It was agreed by all attendees that Homecoming's kick-off event was a big success.

While most people came from the Washington metropolitan area, some travelled a distance – like former alumni representative to UDC’s Board of Trustees Antoinette Mingo ’80, who made the trip from Charlotte, NC, to celebrate the occasion.

Alumna Portia Holmes Shields ’60, PhD, delivered a keynote message that resonated with the University audience: That universities going through major transformations similar to UDC inevitably face detractors but that the important work of moving forward had to go on. Other program highlights included the special moments when Georgia Johnson Herron ’46 and Theresa Nelson Travis ’77 and ’90 received the alumni organization’s highest distinction: the UDCNAS Distinguished Alumni Award. Both were noted for their continuous, laudatory service to UDCNAS as well as to UDC and its students.

After speeches, awards and dinner, the night closed on the fun note that everyone, especially the members of the Student Government Association, was waiting for—dancing to the grooves of the Just N Time Music group. It was one more in the win column for alumni and the University.

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