The Alumni Accent - An e-newsletter from Berry College

Perfect prose

Approximately 600 first-year students, instructors and mentors were on hand Sept. 27 as literature came to life during a presentation by acclaimed author Dr. Maya Angelou at The Forum in Rome. Dr. Angelou was in Rome as part of the One Book/Many Voices community reading program, of which Berry is a partner. The students in attendance read Dr. Angelou's book, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, as part of Berry's first-year reading program.

Also on hand for Dr. Angelou's lecture were registrants of the seventh biennial Southern Women Writers Conference, held Sept. 27-29 on the Berry campus. For coverage of the lecture, go to


Raise your hands for Mountain Day!

Is that a hint of fall in the air? Okay, maybe not, but whether the temperature is 85 or 65, Mountain Day is almost here! An institutional staple since the early part of the 20th century, Mountain Day 2007 gets under way Friday, Oct. 5, and continues through the weekend. If you haven't made plans to attend this year's celebration, STOP WHAT YOU'RE DOING and go to to access a complete calendar of events. This year's schedule includes reunions for the college classes of 1982, 1997 and 2002, as well as a joint reunion for the Berry Academy classes of 1974-78 and 1982. For more information contact Jennifer Tucker Beard (93C, 00G) at 706-290-2170 or e-mail

Once your Mountain Day plans are set, don't forget to come back and finish reading the Alumni Accent — we'll be waiting for you!


Extra! Extra!
Read all about it

The fall issue of Berry magazine is at the printer now and should be hitting your mail boxes sometime in the next two weeks. This issue includes stories about an acclaimed concert pianist, a decorated Army doctor and an alumnus who provided hope and comfort in the wake of the Virginia Tech tragedy, among its many features. You can also look for campus news and highlights, a new column by President Stephen R. Briggs and, of course, a healthy serving of class notes. Our work is done (at least on this issue). We certainly hope you enjoy it.


Spreading the word

In a continuing effort to ensure that students, faculty and staff have up-to-date information in a time of crisis, Berry has implemented a new emergency messaging system, BerryALERT, that is capable of sending notifications and text messages instantly and simultaneously to registered mobile phones, Blackberrys, wireless PDAs, pagers, Smart or Satellite phones, e-mail accounts and instant-messaging services. Berry is offering this optional service through a contract agreement with e2Campus, a national leader in emergency messaging.

If you are the parent of a current Berry student, please encourage your son or daughter to register for this important service as quickly as possible by going to Sign-up is free. The only fees will be those imposed by cellular providers in the event a message is sent. (Alumni, please note that this service is only available to students, faculty and staff.)


In defense of the 'bubble'

If you have spent any time whatsoever on the Berry campus, you doubtless have heard reference to the "Berry bubble," that existential barrier that separates the college community from the outside world. Though often seen in a negative light, the bubble is actually a positive thing, according to faculty member Dr. Michael Papazian, who delivered an impassioned defense of the concept at the opening convocation for the 2007-08 academic year. In his mind, the bubble is an "essential" part of education and a direct descendant of the earliest centers of learning in the Western World. Click this link to read more. Who knows? You might just see the "Berry bubble" in a new light.


Are you ready
for some football?

Berry might not have a football team to call its own, but that hasn't stopped three current students and one alumnus from serving up a weekly dose of cutting-edge media coverage courtesy of the Rome News-Tribune. Gridiron Central, the first show of its type in Georgia, is a weekly video podcast (or vodcast) providing comprehensive coverage of high school football games throughout the Rome area. Current student Leslie Houck, at left in photo, and alumnus Ross McDuffie (07C), right, host the 30-minute program, while two other students, Tricia Dillard and Elizabeth Cady, provide technical support. More about this innovative new program can be found online at
. To view current and past episodes, go to (Photo courtesy of the Rome News-Tribune).


Business alumni
lend a helping hand

The alumni community came out in force Sept. 18 to support the accounting and finance career fair hosted by the Career Development Center and the Campbell School of Business. A total of 19 alumni took part in the event, which provided current students with an on-campus opportunity to network with potential employers representing a variety of companies in Northwest Georgia, Atlanta and Chattanooga. The next campus career fair (for all majors) is scheduled for Feb. 12. If you work for a company or organization that might be interested in taking part, please call 706-236-2292 or e-mail for more details.

If you'd like to get involved but can't make it back to campus, the Alumni Career Network is another option to explore. As a member, you agree to make yourself available to answer questions from students and fellow alumni as they explore various career fields, assist with questions about job and internship searches, and perhaps even invite students to shadow you for a day. To sign up online, go to


Voice of authority

Charlotte area alumni with an interest in politics don't want to miss the 2007 Weaver/Ingersoll Symposium, to be hosted by Belmont Abbey College, Oct. 19-20. The keynote address for the event will be delivered by longtime Berry faculty member Dr. Peter Lawler, the 2007 recipient of the Richard M. Weaver Prize for Scholarly Letters. As this year's winner, Dr. Lawler had the opportunity to choose the theme for the symposium, "American Ideas of Liberty and Virtue: Political, Religious and Philosophical Dimensions." Online registration is available at The deadline is Oct. 15. Dr. Lawler may be reached directly at


Help from Uncle Sam

Rep. Phil Gingrey, second from right, visited campus Sept. 21 to inspect improvements to the college dairy made possible by EQIP (Environmental Quality Incentive Program) Cost Share, a program administered by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Thanks to this program, workers have been able to implement a conservation plan for the dairy pasture, thus strengthening environmental practices at the facility. Among those joining Rep. Gingrey for the tour was Sheri Hopper Teems (90C), district conservationist for the NRCS, who helped to facilitate the partnership. Other projects supported by EQIP Cost Share include one related to the college’s horse operations and another tied to Berry’s beef cattle unit. To access media coverage of the congressman's visit, go to


An example to follow

Lydia Fields, at left in photo, was diagnosed with Relapse-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (MS) at age 15, but that condition hasn't prevented the senior communication major from lending her leadership and talents to groups across campus. At the same time, she has taken an active role in raising funds and awareness for people living with MS. Recently, Lydia had the opportunity to reach a national audience as a panel participant in a live webcast sponsored by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and MS LifeLines®, "Real Talk. Real Answers: Living with MS in Your 20s and 30s." To learn more about this program, go to


A wealth of opportunities

The alumni calendar for October has something for just about every taste. Whether you're interested in reuniting with old friends, making new business contacts or learning about art and architecture in the 20th century, we've got something for you. If you're within driving distance of campus, you also might consider one of the many fine arts events scheduled for fall semester (click this link to access the online calendar).

Unless otherwise noted, contact Fred Mercer at 800-782-0130, 706-290-2164 or for information or to RSVP for the events below.

Dalton, Ga., Alumni Chapter Meeting
6:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 4, at Kelly's Restaurant

Rome Alumni Chapter Dinner
6:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 5, in the Garden Room at Oak Hill  

African-American Alumni Chapter Meet-and-Greet
7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 5, in the Krannert Center Faculty Lounge

Mountain Day Chapel Service
10 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 6, featuring Terri Colson Earls (85C) as guest speaker

Ag Alumni Chapter Meeting
3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 6, in the Westcott Building

African-American Alumni Chapter Dinner
7 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 6, in the Spruill Ballroom

Rome Young Alumni Chapter Dinner
5:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 18, at Las Palmas

Evening Discussion Series at Oak Hill
7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 18; "Early 20th Century Modernism in Art & Architecture," featuring Dr. Virginia Gardner Troy, associate professor of art. Admission is free. Call 706-368-6775 or e-mail to RSVP.

Pensacola, Fla./Mobile, Ala., Chapter Dinner
Noon, Saturday, Oct. 20, at Hall's Seafood Restaurant

East Tennessee Alumni Chapter Meeting
Noon, Saturday, Oct. 20, at Smoky's Restaurant in Dandridge, Tenn.

Richmond, Va., Chapter Meeting
3:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 20, at the Virginia State Capitol; dinner to follow at 5:30 p.m. at the Tobacco Company Restaurant

Berry College Executive Round Table Fall Dinner
6:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 23, in the Spruill Ballroom. Mackey J. McDonald, chair and CEO of VF Corp., will be the featured speaker. Individual admission is $30. E-mail or call 404-545-7660 to register. The deadline is Oct. 12.

Make a Difference Day
TBA, Saturday, Oct. 27; chapters are asked to assist an organization of their choice.         

Rome Alumni Chapter Halloween Party
6 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 30, in the party room at Bella Roma

Got news? Maybe a new job or a new baby? Recently married? Share the good news with your friends through class notes in Berry magazine. E-mail your news, including your year of graduation, to If you would like to subscribe to or unsubscribe from this list, send an e-mail message to Justin Karch, gifts and records specialist, at Please include your full name and e-mail address. You also can reach us at 800-782-0130.

If you have questions, comments or suggestions for our e-newsletter, e-mail Chris Watters at