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February 2015 Class Letter

Dear Classmates,

It has been a busy fall and winter for Cornell and the Class of 1973. Classmates celebrated the Sesquicentennial in Washington, DC and Boston, and get-togethers of the classes of 1970 – 1974 before the Madison Square Garden hockey game and after the Sy Katz ’31 parade in New York City, and a pre-Sesqui event in DC. And ten class officers and council members from around the country joined nearly 700 Cornellians in Boston for the annual Cornell Alumni Leadership Conference.

Class officers at Boston Sesqui

At the Boston Sesqui (L to R, front): Rick Saltz, Eliot Greenwald, Larry Taylor. (rear) A. D. White, Marty Sherman, Danielle Trostorff, E. Cornell.

The actual Sesquicentennial celebration, a show called “The Big Idea,” was just marvelous. Combining video, animation, and live action; slapstick comedy and serious discussion; Cornell song and Indian dance (including Indian dance to Cornell song!); current professors and Touchdown the Bear; and Ezra, Andrew, and David (Skorton), it was by turns funny, inspiring, informative, and moving. It has sold out in every city it’s been to, so if you’re in one of the remaining cities on the tour, don’t miss it!

Introducing two of our scholarship recipients

In my last letter I announced that all donations to the Class of 1973 Scholarship Fund from October 2014 to June 2015 would be in honor of our classmate Susan Murphy, who is retiring in June after 37 years at Cornell, the last twenty of which she served as the Vice President for Student and Academic Services.

To put a “face” on the scholarship fund, I want to introduce you to a couple of Cornell students who have been helped by your generosity in the 25 years since the fund was started.

Lucas Colbert-Carreiro (ILR '15), current Class of 1973 Scholarship recipient, with his mother Dr. Colleen Colbert '73

Lucas Colbert-Carreiro (ILR ’15), current Class of 1973 Scholarship recipient, with his mother Dr. Colleen Colbert ’73

Lucas Colbert-Carreiro ’15 is our current scholarship recipient. He is the son of classmate Colleen Colbert, and is a fourth-generation Cornellian.  Lucas is a senior in the College or Industrial and Labor Relations, and is minoring in English and film.  He has done a range of internships, most recently  with the finance team at Cornell Tech during the intersession.  Last semester he interned at the Solidarity Center of the AFL-CIO.  You can read more about his background here.

I looked up Lucas in the Cornell directory and found a picture of him with other ILR students at a taping of The Daily Show during a previous winter intersession. I wrote to him and here is his reply:

Once again, I just want to extend my sincere appreciation for the scholarship!

Yes, the visit to the Daily Show taping last year was a lot of fun, and very informative about labor practices and unionization within the arts and entertainment industries.

As far as post-graduate plan go I am still a little unsure at this point. I have been attending various graduate school open houses so far during semester in Washington, D.C. including Johns Hopkins’ School of Advanced International Studies and Georgetown’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.

However, I have also begun the job hunt within the fields of human resources, management consulting and media/marketing and am trying to keep my options – whether they be a continuation of academics or the start of a career – fairly open.

In the meantime, during my semester working with the Solidarity Center’s Asia department I have had the privilege to work with the newly awarded Nobel Peace Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi, which was particularly special.

Regardless of what path I end up taking, I’ll be sure to keep you and the Class of 1973 updated on my progress!

Chris Casieri ’91, one of our earliest recipients, received our scholarship in his senior year. He writes to us as follows:

Thanks for reaching out. I am happy to help with your efforts towards this worthy cause.

I am proud and grateful to have been chosen as a Class of 1973 Scholarship recipient. The assistance provided to me through this Scholarship was a key contributor to my being able to enroll at Cornell. Growing up in the Bronx, NY with parents who valued higher education and sacrificed to provide the best educational opportunities for their children, your class Scholarship helped me achieve this goal at the highest level. Attending Cornell was a life-changing experience for me in many ways, providing exposure to a broad range of academic subjects, supporting personal development through the arts and sports, and bringing me together with an endless group of intelligent and engaging people, many of whom remain my close friends to this day. After graduating from Cornell with a BA degree in Psychology I moved to Chicago where I worked in the field of Nonprofit Management and Philanthropy and earned an MA and MBA from the University of Chicago.  I moved back to NY in 1999 to start a family and begin a career with Pfizer, Inc. where I have held positions in Finance, Marketing, and currently in Payer Market Access. The broad exposure to many disciplines that I received at Cornell has allowed me to appreciate and pursue a diversity of experiences throughout my career, and fostered an ability to connect with people on many levels. I remain engaged with Cornell now as an active CAAAN member, supporter of the Annual Fund, and through ongoing friendships with several classmates. I think of my Cornell days as some of the most enjoyable and transformational of my life and I would like to thank the Class of 1973 for your generous support of the Scholarship fund, and for the many opportunities and experiences it has helped make possible for me and all of the past and future recipients.

Regards,
Chris Casieri ‘91

I hope these inspiring expressions of the Cornell spirit encourage you to support future generations of Cornellians like Lucas and Chris. Just click on this link and enter “Class of 1973 Scholarship Fund” in the box marked “Other designations or special instructions.” Alternatively, you can write in your donation to the fund on your Cornell Fund pledge card.

Upcoming events

  • Jon Kaplan is organizing a reprise of the successful panel and discussion on “The Next Stage of Our Lives” on Sunday, February 8, in Danville, CA. Invitations have gone out to all local alumni, but if you’re in the area and haven’t gotten the notice, contact him at jkaplan999 (at) gmail.com.
  • An early ‘70s classes event is being planned for Sunday afternoon, March 8, ahead of the Los Angeles Sesquicentennial celebration. Area alumni, watch for an invitation shortly.
  • A “mini-Reunion” is being planned for a weekend in July or August. Nancy Roistacher, president of the Class of 1972, organized one last summer to which about two dozen members of the classes of ’71 – ’73 came. Participants took a class in cell phone photography, went on guided walks in the Plantations, attended “Shakespeare in the Arboretum,” among other activities. It was a good chance to return to campus during a quiet time, and to meet old friends and make new ones. Some of the people hadn’t been back on campus in decades.The Cornell Association of Class Officers and the staff at Alumni Affairs are providing funding and support to grow this program so any number of people from any classes can participate. The idea is that each group will be limited in size to probably no more than thirty people, and various options will be available for people to choose (e.g., tour of Ithaca Brewery, Johnson Museum tour, etc.).We as a class have chosen to participate, so watch for more information on this as the summer gets closer.

Support the activities of the Class of 1973!

 You will shortly be receiving a solicitation for dues for the Class of 1973 – the first in 18 months since the University changed our schedule (we’re now back to an annual schedule). Those of you who prefer pay via credit card have the opportunity to sign up again for auto-renewal, so your dues are paid automatically every year. It’s easier for you and for us, so please consider signing up.

This covers your subscription to the Cornell Alumni Magazine (now under the editorial direction of Jenny Barnett, an Oxford graduate with impressive experience leading a variety of magazines), but more importantly, it supports the activities of the class, including Reunion and events such as I described above. If you are one of the many alumni who think paying class dues and donating to the Cornell Fund are one and the same thing, please take two minutes to watch this video that explains the difference, and why it’s important to support both.

Another activity the class officers have elected to support with funds from your dues is to offer our current class scholarship recipient(s) a chance to attend CALC, with all costs paid for by the class. As a class that has historically set Reunion records for donations and participation, and has earned a reputation for innovative class programs, we have long felt that mentoring young alumni is a key mission of our class. What better way to do this than to start with the alumni of tomorrow, namely, the students of today?

There are two more immediate benefits to dues payers. One is access to the Big Red Marketplace, with discounts on a range of national products and services (not just Collegetown Bagels or the Moosewood). The other is that you can opt in to receive a copy of the 2015-16 New Student Reading Project book selection, Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut ’44. Yes, I know that somewhere around the house you probably have your old copy with your then-boyfriend’s/girlfriend’s/connection’s phone number written inside. But this would give you access to webinars and streamed lectures on Vonnegut’s work, as Cornell has made available for dues payers for previous NSRPs. I’m sure some of you are in book clubs, so if you are, and might be interested in leading a virtual book club to discuss the book, please let me know.

And in conclusion…

CornellX will be starting four free online classes shortly:

These are real college courses; “Networks, Crowds, and Markets,” which I audited last spring, regularly fills up with hundreds of students wanting to know how Facebook, Google, and the rest know so much about them. The video lectures and online exercises and forums make the courses easy to take. Check one out!

“Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” Department: The Hangovers, a male a cappella group, sang this song at CALC 2015.  I’ve only listened to it about fifty times since then, and thought you might enjoy it, too.

Thanks to those of you who answered the class survey in December.  I’ll talk about the results of that in my next class letter.

I enjoy getting feedback from you, so feel free to contact me any time at pcashman21 (at) gmail.com. And as always, if you have any Cornell- or class-related news or pictures, even if it’s just from getting together with a Cornell friend, post it to our class Facebook group.

Best regards –

Paul M. Cashman
President, Cornell Class of 1973