Category: Alumni

Giving Day: A 12-hour live celebration of all things Lawrence

With two smash hits to its credit, Lawrence University looks to make it three in a row with its third edition of Giving Day.

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Giving Day can be a learning experience as co-host Kasey Corrado found out in 2015 when she worked with art professor Rob Neilson to create some living art — a face mold.

From athletics to art, dance to diversity, physics to philosophy, virtually everything you want to know about what’s new and interesting at Lawrence will be discussed Tuesday, Nov. 15 during the college’s third annual 12-hour Giving Day extravaganza.

The 9 a.m.-to-9 p.m. show will be webcast LIVE at go.lawrence.edu/givingday and will feature dozens of special guests and performers from all corners of the campus throughout the day. Lawrence President Mark Burstein, dance instructor Margaret Paek, theatre director Timothy Troy, Kimberly Barrett, dean of diversity and inclusion, classics professor Randall McNeil, the Lawrence Fiddle Club and Porky’s Groove Machine are among those who will share their insights, perspectives and talents.

Kasey Corrado, Lawrence’s director of social media, returns for her third year as “ringmaster” of the show. She will be joined by first-time co-host Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid.

While a 12-hour live gig is definitely a challenge, Corrado calls Giving Day “her favorite day of the year at Lawrence.”

“When you’re given that signal that you’re ‘live,’ it slowly but surely sinks in that you have a marathon and not a sprint ahead of you,” said Corrado. “But this is such a wonderful opportunity to celebrate all that is Lawrence. In 12 hours, we’re able to showcase current students, connect with alumni, interact with faculty, talk with staff, and of course, share appreciation for our generous donors.

“As a co-host, I enjoy experiencing all the excitement and energy of the day,” she added. “I always come away from Giving Day completely amazed at the amount of love and support Lawrence has not only from people on campus but from all over the world.”

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Great music is a staple of the Giving Day live show as faculty saxophonists Sumner Truax and Steven Jordheim proved last year.

Being in front of a camera is nothing new for Anselment, who previously has “starred” in a pair of Lawrence April Fool’s Day videos, but he admits those productions weren’t exactly perfect preparation for a 12-hour stint in front of the camera eye.

“I’ve stood behind college fair tables for four hours at a time and I’ve run a handful of half marathons, but I have never tried to do all of that in one day,” said Anselment, a 12-year veteran of admissions and financial aid operations at Lawrence.

“My job will be to help our viewers get a sense of how engaging, interesting and fun our community is and that is best done by letting our guests shine as brightly as they can,” added Anselment, a former college cheerleader. “I plan to bring all that enthusiasm to Giving Day without, of course, my old cheerleading uniform.”

Lawrence held its first Giving Day in 2014 as a one-day-only fundraising event for alumni and friends to show their support for Lawrence and its programs. The first year, with the help of “game changers” who promised to match gifts, raised $1.1 million for the college. Last year, more than 2,300 donors generated $1.36 million during the second Giving Day event.

For this year’s event, more than 140 alumni, parents and friends have agreed to serve as “game changers” by providing matching funds to motivate others to support the college and its students according to Ben Campbell, Lawrence’s director of annual giving.

“We are heartened by the way the university community continues to pull together for this wonderful celebration of Lawrence, past and present,” said Campbell, a 1997 LU graduate. “We’re looking forward to doing it all again, only bigger, better and ‘bLUer.’ We hope everyone can find some time during the show to give, share and watch in celebration of Lawrence Giving Day 2016.”

Exhibiting her apparent high pain threshold, Rachel Crowl has returned to perform her masterful behind-the-scenes wizardry as the webcast’s all-important producer/director for a third straight year.

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With encouragement from biologist Bart DeStasio, Giving Day co-host Kasey Corrado gets ready to don some field research gear.

“I’m fully prepared for things to once again go wrong in ways I never expected and I can’t wait to watch us catch ourselves again before we fall,” said Crowl, who has spent months lining up guests and organizing the show. She’s promising a more music-infused program for year three along with the usual staples.

“I’m hoping to have at least one jaw-dropping musical performance very hour. We’re also going to take a look at some of the mainstays of a liberal arts college, like philosophy and classics, do a little science, learn about public art, make some chili, do some dancing, make some noise.

“I just want to have some fun, be entertaining, show off Lawrence University and raise some money.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.”  Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Lawrence hosts weekend reunion for Black Alumni Network

Black-Alumni-Network_newsblog1Lawrence University welcomes members of its Black Alumni Network to campus Sept. 30-Oct. 2 for its second reunion. The weekend-long event is designed to provide opportunities to reconnect with former classmates and the college as well as interact with current students.

“This reunion provides a wonderful opportunity for Lawrence to support this engaged and successful group of graduates,” said Kimberly Barrett, vice president of diversity and inclusion and associate dean of the faculty. “It also provides a way for these individuals to give back to the institution by contributing to the success of current students, particular those who identify as African-American.

Alumni attending the reunion can relive their college days by sitting in on one of three Fall Term classes with current students: “Democracy in Comparative Perspective,” “Introduction to Gender Studies” and “Literature and the Environment.”

Other reunion activities include campus tours, a lunch with small group conversations addressing campus issues related to identity development and diversity with Pa Lee Moua, associate dean of students for diversity and students, a screening of author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ 2015 Lawrence convocation “Race in America: A Deeper Black” followed by group discussion and a Diversity Circle program offering a contemporary approach to diversity training moderated by current Lawrence students.

Black-Affinity-Reunion_newsblog2As part of the weekend festivities, the president and other senior administrators will join the alumni for lunch on Oct. 1, members of Lawrence’s Black Student Union will host an open house at Sankofa House for the alumni Saturday evening and members of the President’s Committee on Diversity Affairs will host a question-and-answer session in conjunction with a Sunday brunch.

“Those attending the reunion will be able to share key insights with university administrators to assist in our efforts to create a more inclusive Lawrence,” said Barrett. “I feel extremely fortunate to have access to this brain trust to inform my work as I begin my tenure at Lawrence as the college’s first chief diversity officer.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.”  Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Milwaukee-Downer College legacy honored, preserved in renamed building

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The one-time Jason Downer Commons now bears the name of long-time Milwaukee-Downer College trustee and benefactor Alice G. Chapman.

Lawrence University’s deep connections to Milwaukee-Downer College will be strengthened further by honoring Alice G. Chapman, a long-time trustee and benefactor of the former all-women’s college.

The original Jason Downer Commons, currently known as the Hurvis Center, is being renamed Alice G. Chapman Hall.

Located on the east end of campus, Chapman Hall is home to the Lawrence admissions office, the career center, the alumni and constituency engagement office and the film studies program.

“Renaming our building Alice G. Chapman Hall will underscore the valued connection between Lawrence University and the historic Milwaukee-Downer campus,” said Stacy Mara, associate vice president for development.

Highlighting the building is the beautifully hand-carved Alice Chapman Room, also known as the Teakwood Room. It was originally built by American artist and architect Lockwood de Forest in Chapman’s Milwaukee home and used as a music room. After Chapman died in 1935, the Teakwood Room was placed in Chapman Library on the Milwaukee-Downer campus in 1938 and used for receptions, poetry readings and chamber music.

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The Teakwood Room, a distinctive feature of the Milwaukee-Downer College campus, was moved to Lawrence after the 1964 consolidation and is now on the second floor of Chapman Hall.

When the consolidation was announced, members of the Milwaukee-Downer community asked that their beloved room be preserved. The room was carefully disassembled and stored in a warehouse until 1968 when it was reassembled at Lawrence in Downer Commons.

“The Chapman name has long been associated with Milwaukee Downer College and it is significantly fitting to reunite Chapman Hall and the Teakwood Room to perpetuate Downer at Lawrence,” said Marlene Widen, a 1955 Milwaukee-Downer graduate and 2013 recipient of the university’s Presidential Award for exemplary leadership and actions have contributed to the betterment of the entire Lawrence community. “Chapman Hall will serve as the east anchor to another beloved part of Downer, the recreated Hawthornden on the west end of campus.”

Born in Boston in 1853, Alice Greenwood Chapman grew up in Milwaukee, where her father, T. A. Chapman, ran Chapman’s Department Store. She attended Milwaukee Female College, a predecessor of Milwaukee-Downer, and served on Milwaukee-Downer’s Board of Trustees from 1906 until her death.

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Alice G. Chapman

Known as “an ardent lover of music,” Alice Chapman was an accomplished musician who also enjoyed composing. She was active with a numerous civic groups, including the Milwaukee Institute of Arts, the Visiting Nurses Association and the Children’s Hospital.

Chapman was a generous benefactor for Milwaukee-Downer, including a bequest that funded a new library building. After the consolidation with Lawrence, the Chapman Library became Chapman Hall and is now the Office of the Chancellor at UW-Milwaukee.

Originally completed in 1968, Downer Commons, which served as the campus’ primary dining center for 40 years, was named in honor of Judge Jason Downer, an associate justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court from 1864-1867. He served as the president of the board of trustees (1866-1871; 1874-1878) for Wisconsin Female College in Fox Lake, a predecessor to Milwaukee-Downer College. When Downer died, he left a gift of $65,000 to the college and its name was changed to Downer College.

When the Warch Campus Center opened in 2009 and dining services moved there, Downer Commons was remodeled to accommodate offices and a state-of-the-art production studio for the university’s newly expanded film studies program, which was supported by a generous gift from the Hurvis family and the Caerus Foundation.

“Lawrence is exceedingly grateful for the Hurvis family’s flexibility in allowing us to make this name change,” said Mara. “Alice Chapman’s famous Teakwood Room has remained a constant fixture and notable highlight on campus throughout the life of the building. Alumni from Lawrence and Milwaukee-Downer associate the building with our Milwaukee-Downer history because of this special room.”

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A production studio is part of the Hurvis Film Studies Center in the lower level of Chapman Hall.

According to Mara, Lawrence will recognize the generosity and dedication of the Hurvis family and the Caerus Foundation by continuing to associate the Hurvis family name with the film studies program, which was their original intent, but not the building itself. The southeast portion of Chapman Hall that houses the film studies program will display the name “Hurvis Film Studies Center” on the outside of the building, with additional Hurvis Film Studies Center signage inside.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Welcome Back: Lawrence Reunion celebrates its graduates, honors five alumni

Nancy Mattson put her Lawrence University degree in economics to such good use, she earned recognition from the United States Navy.

Her work in 1987 as a financial advisor on a $3 billion vessel financing program for the U.S. Navy earned her one of the few Distinguished Public Service Awards bestowed by the Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan Administration.

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Nancy Mattson ’76

Mattson is one of five Lawrence graduates who will be honored Saturday, June 18 as part of the university’s annual alumni Reunion celebration. Each will be recognized at the Reunion Convocation at 10:30 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel. The event is free and open to the public.

More than 1,000 alumni and guests from 43 states and five countries, including India, Italy and Romania, representing classes as early as 1940, are expected to return to campus.

Members of the Lawrence 50-Year Connection, a cohort of alumni who graduated at least 50 years ago, get Reunion activities started Wednesday evening June 15 with a reception and dinner and a series of panel presentations and small-group discussions on Thursday, June 16. A complete schedule of Reunion activities can be found here.

The 2016 awards and recipients are:

• Lucia Russell Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award — Nancy Mattson, Class of 1976, Novato, Calif. The award recognizes a Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer graduate of more than 15 years for outstanding career achievement. The award honors the second president of Milwaukee-Downer College, one of the most beloved and influential figures in that college’s history.

 With more than has more than 35 years of commercial and investment banking experience, Mattson is the founder, managing director, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Argent Group Ltd., a boutique investment banking firm.

Prior to founding Argent in 1982, Mattson spent three years as a vice president with Bank of America. An expert in maritime finance, she has served as a member of the shipbuilding subcommittee of U.S. Marine Transportation System National Advisory Council for the U.S. Department of Transportation.

“I’m fond of saying Lawrence was a great place to ‘grow up,’” said Mattson. “Lawrence gave me the academic background I needed to succeed in my business career.  The liberal arts focus of the university meant that I was exposed to courses that I would not study in depth, but the study of which would enrich my life.

“Lawrence clearly helped me build a firm foundation for life and I believe that it is continuing to do the same for today’s Lawrentians,” Mattson added. “I am grateful to have had the opportunity to attend this truly outstanding university.”

After graduating from Lawrence, Mattson earned an MBA from the John M. Olin School of Business at Washington University, which recognized her with a distinguished alumni award in 1995.

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Curien Kurrien ’01

• Nathan M. Pusey Young Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award — Curien Kurrien, Class of 2001, Mumbai, India. The award recognizes Lawrence alumni of 15 years or less for significant contributions to, and achievements in, a career field. The award honors the 10th and youngest president of Lawrence and an exemplary figure in higher education in the 20th century.

In 2008, Kurrien became an important footnote within the vast publication empire of Condé Nast. At the age of 29, launched GQ India, becoming the youngest editor-in-chief in the publishing titan’s history. Since making its debut eight years ago, Kurrien has built the magazine into India’s leading men’s media brand.

Prior to heading GQ India, he worked as a reporter for The Indian Express, a daily newspaper. He also covered the music and nightlife scene for Time Out Mumbai magazine and wrote for Reuters, the international wire service, which brought his stories to The New York Times and Washington Post, among others.

“I only began to fully understand the value of my Lawrence education as a senior, when I magically started connecting the dots between ostensibly disparate fields, drawing from each discipline to strengthen my arguments in another,” Kurrien said. “These insights imbued me with precious confidence I’d never possessed before – a powerful force that I draw upon daily for my complex, creative, nuanced job as editor-in-chief of GQ India.”

“I returned home a year after I graduated,” Kurrien added. “By then the Lawrence liberal arts ideal had transformed and armed me with a unique outlook that allowed me to identify and capitalize on a range of opportunities in the new India.”

Kurrien earned a degree in government from Lawrence in 2001 and a post-graduate certificate in journalism from New York University.

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Timothy Burnside ’02

• The George B. Walter Service to Society Award — Timothy Anne Burnside, Class of 2002, Washington, D.C. The award recognizes an alumnus or alumna of Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer who best exemplifies the ideals of a liberal education through its application to socially useful ends in the community, the nation or the world. This award honors George B. Walter ’36, faculty member, coach and dean of men, whose work at the college and beyond was guided by his conviction that every individual can and should make a positive difference in the world.

As a museum specialist at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, Burnside works with musicians, artists and others to build collections and develop exhibitions that offer complex representations of history and cultural expression.

She began her career in 2003 at the National Museum of American History where she launched that museum’s hip-hop collecting initiative. Among the numerous Smithsonian projects she has worked on was an exhibition on Harlem’s Apollo Theater. Burnside regularly presents at conferences and serves on the executive committee of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music.

“I’m lucky to have a career that combines the three things I studied at Lawrence, which I am grateful for every single day,” said Burnside. “I carry every life lesson and classroom experience from Lawrence with me, because those moments taught me how to be confident and not afraid of striving to do the work that I love.

“I learned humility and the importance of working towards a goal because of the good work being done, not because you would be rewarded. I came away from those four years without a plan for the rest of my life, but I knew that I would be ok.”

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in English from Lawrence, Burnside earned a master’s degree in museum studies at Johns Hopkins University.

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Betty Barrett M-D ’55

• Gertrude Breithaupt Jupp Outstanding Service Award — Betty Barrett, Milwaukee-Downer Class of 1955, Macomb, Ill., and William Hochkammer, Class of 1966, Bloomfield Hills, Mich. The award recognizes an alumnus or alumna of Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer after his/her 15th Cluster Reunion who has provided outstanding service to Lawrence. It honors Gertrude Breithaupt Jupp, voted Milwaukee-Downer alumna of the year in 1964 for her long-standing service to the college as president of the alumnae association board, class secretary and public relations officer.

Barrett has worked tirelessly to sustain the Milwaukee-Downer legacy after the former all-women’s college consolidated with Lawrence in 1964. Through the Betty Heistad Barrett Fund for Excellence in Civic Service, which she established with her late husband in 2010, Lawrence students are empowered to improve the world, grow as young professionals and explore the nonprofit sector.

Barrett has served on the Lawrence Alumni Association Board of Directors, numerous reunion committees and as a member of a working group for Lawrence’s 2005-11 More Light! campaign.

“‘With a heart full of love for our college’ is a line from the Milwaukee-Downer College alma mater that never fails to bring tears, even 62 years after the merger that formed Lawrence University,” said Barrett. “Downer lives on in the hearts and minds of its devoted alumnae. I am grateful that many of our traditions continue, most visibly the class colors.”

“Lawrence’s liberal arts program, fine professors, individualized education and small size  all make it a fine choice for many students,” Barrett added. “I appreciate coming to Lawrence to meet those students who are successors to me and my classmates. Milwaukee-Downer College lives on through these students.”

After earned a bachelor’s degree at M-D, Barrett earned a master’s degree in government from Marshall University.

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William Hochkammer ’66

Hochkammer, a health care attorney and partner in the Detroit law firm Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP, served 22 years on Lawrence’s Board of Trustees, including as board chairman from 2005-07. He was recently re-elected to the board, becoming the first trustee in Lawrence history to complete his term limit and be invited to rejoin the board.

While on the board, Hochkammer was instrumental in the success of Lawrence’s $160 million “More Light!” campaign that ended in 2011 and served on the Presidential Search Committee that appointed Jill Beck as the university’s 15th president. He currently serves on the leadership team for Lawrence’s $75 million “Full Speed to Full Need” endowed scholarship campaign.

“Attending Lawrence was a life changing experience for me. It was instrumental to my transition from growing up on a Wisconsin farm, the first in my family to attend college, to completing law school and to a full and enjoyable life on both a personal and professional basis,” said Hochkammer. “While I valued my time as a student at Lawrence I didn’t then fully appreciate what I was gaining from my experience. As I had more life experiences, my appreciation for my Lawrence education continued to grow as I saw how well Lawrence had prepared me as a person.

“Today I see how strongly Lawrence is committed to its mission, how it continues to transform the lives of students and how it strives constantly to become even better at providing outstanding experiences to its students,” Hochkammer added.

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in economics from Lawrence, Hochkammer earned a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Lawrence mourns the passing of long-time benefactor Hugh Denison

Lawrence University has lost one of its most generous benefactors with the passing of Hugh Denison. A 1968 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Lawrence, Denison died at his Milwaukee home June 9 after a lengthy battle with pulmonary fibrosis. He was 70 years old.

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Hugh Denison ’68

Voted the outstanding economics major of his graduating class, Denison became a highly successful businessman. He joined Heartland Advisors in 1985 as director of equity research and helped grow the Milwaukee-based investment firm into a multibillion-dollar money management company.

In 1996 at the age of 50, he experienced an epiphany and left the company to work with children. He earned a teaching certificate and spent eight years working with Junior Achievement, the Boy Scouts, YMCA and volunteering as a third-grade teacher in Milwaukee’s inner city schools teaching business principles.

In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Jim Kitzinger, principal and portfolio manager at KLCM Advisors Inc. in Milwaukee, said, “There are a lot of guys in our business who throw money at problems. Hugh threw himself at that problem.”

He returned to Heartland in 2004 as a portfolio manager, retiring in 2013 as senior vice president. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett proclaimed the day of his “second” retirement as “Hugh Denison Day.”

A decorated combat veteran who served in Vietnam with the U.S. Navy, Denison was widely respected as a man of high integrity. He was renowned for the deep and lasting relationships he built, not only in his professional life, but also in the personal projects into which he poured himself, leaving indelible imprints on those he worked with.

Philanthropy and volunteerism were at the core of Denison’s life and few benefited more from his generous gifts of time, talent and treasure than Lawrence, which honored him with the university’s Jupp Outstanding Service Award in 2012.

He was currently serving as the chair of the university’s Full Speed to Full Need Campaign to bolster significantly endowed scholarship funding for Lawrence students. Playing an instrumental role through his personal fundraising efforts, the campaign has already raised more than $60 million toward a goal of $75 million.

Denison was also a member of the university’s Campaign Planning Task Force and previously served on the President’s Advisory Council. As co-chair of the Legacy Circle National Council, Denison tirelessly promoted the university’s planned giving program to classmates and peers at events and through personal testimonials. He often participated as a panelist in the Lawrence Scholars in Business program.

Hugh-Denison_newsblog2As a member of the Lawrence University Board of Trustees’ development and capital More Light! campaign committees, Denison was instrumental in the university’s fundraising efforts, traveling across the country to develop strong relationships with alumni and supporters of the college, and encouraging donors to realize their full philanthropic potential. For his many efforts, Denison was recognized by the Association of Fundraising Professionals with the Outstanding Fundraising Volunteer Award in November 2015.

A native of Sheboygan, Denison and his wife, Mary, provided leadership gifts in support of the Lawrence Fund, the Innovation and Entrepreneurship program and the Warch Bjorklunden endowment. Members of the Legacy Circle, the Denisons have established a generous provision in their estate plans for the Hugh and Mary Denison Endowed Fund in appreciation for Lawrence and their desire to enhance educational opportunities for future Lawrentians.

In addition to Lawrence, Denison’s community engagement included serving as the former president of the Board of Trustees for the John Michael Kohler Arts Center and the Sheboygan Arts Foundation. He also served on the board of directors of Big Brothers Big Sisters, Skylight Opera Theatre and the Milwaukee Athletic Club. Long-time service to Lakeland College, including guest lecturer, advisor to the president and a member of the college’s Foundation Committee earned Denison the title of honorary alumnus in 2013.

He is survived by his wife, Mary, and a son, Ross, of Portland, Ore., a sister, Judy Demuese, and brother-in-law, Jerry Doty. A memorial service celebrating Denison’s life will be held in August in Milwaukee.

As the Lawrence community mourns the passing of an exemplar Lawrentian, it celebrates his ceaseless gratitude, his positive spirit, his belief in his alma mater and his tireless efforts to sustain and improve the communities he called home.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Young alumni-driven crowdfunding initiative looks to enhance Lawrence Diversity Center

A $10,000 crowdfunding effort to support Lawrence University’s Diversity Center and enhance campus life for students is in the home stretch.

Diversity-Ccenter_newsblog-3Organized by the Viking Gift Committee and led by Lawrence alumni Erin Campbell Watson ’09 and Gayatri Malhotra ’14, the effort is targeting young alumni in an effort to help current and future Lawrentians. The campaign, which runs through Monday, April 18, has generated nearly $2,600 to date.

“We thought it would be meaningful to explore fundraising opportunities related to campus inclusivity and the student organizations involved,” said Watson. “This is a powerful way for young alumni to show current students that we support them while making an impact on the campus climate that really demonstrates the meaning of our donations, no matter how small.”

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Erin Campbell Watson ’09

The Diversity Center, which will be relocating this summer from the lower level of Memorial Hall to the main floor, provides a safe, welcoming place for students to be aware, educated, and engaged with cultural competency and building a more inclusive community.  It provides resources that are often taken for granted, such as cultural support, campus wide programming, connections to student organizations, community collaborations, as well as a comfortable space that is “home” for many students.

The Diversity Center currently has one full-time staff member, a part-time program coordinator and 18 student workers. An additional full-time staff person is expected to be added this spring.

Funds raised through the crowdfunding effort will be earmarked to support professional development opportunities for student workers, provide additional educational programming to campus and establish a monetary reserve to assist students in times of emergency need. In addition, they will enhance the environment of the new location with artwork and visuals to represent a transparent diverse community.

Pa Lee Moua
Pa Lee Moua

“As our Lawrence community continues to grow and become more diverse, we also need to enhance the necessary resources and services that foster student success,” said Pa Lee Moua, associate dean of students for multicultural affairs. “The Diversity Center is much more than a department or location. For many, it’s home. It’s a supportive community. It’s personal growth. It’s leadership development. It’s education, awareness and knowledge, which are all essential components in retention and overall academic success.”

All donations go directly to the Diversity Center’s annual budget. They will not count as a gift to the Lawrence Fund. For more information, contact Kari Swason, assistant director of annual giving, 920-842-7307 or kari.e.swanson@lawrence.edu.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Lawrence grad Bill Baer named associate attorney general at U.S. Justice Department’s

A Lawrence University alumnus has been named acting U.S. associate attorney general in the Justice Department by Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

Bill Baer '72
Bill Baer ’72

Bill Baer, a 1972 Lawrence graduate, will leave his current position as head of the department’s Antitrust Division to assume the department’s no. 3 post. He will replace Stuart Delery, the acting associate attorney general.

“From his work at the Federal Trade Commission to his leadership of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division, he has demonstrated keen intelligence, strong judgment and consummate skill,” Lynch said in a statement announcing Baer’s appointment.

Baer has served as Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division since December 2012. Within a month of his appointment, Baer moved to block Anheuser-Busch InBev’s takeover of Grupo Modelo. In April 2013, he ramped up litigation previously filed against Apple over the pricing of e-books. Also in 2013, his office challenged the merger between American and US Airways, which led the airlines to agree to significant divestitures to address competition concerns.

His antitrust work has been recognized with numerous awards. In 2010, the National Law Journal named him one of “the decade’s most influential lawyers.”  The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers named Baer the “leading competition lawyer in the world” in 2006 and 2007.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in government from Lawrence and a law degree from Stanford University, Baer began his career with the Federal Trade Commission in 1975, serving first as an attorney advisor and then as assistant general counsel and director of congressional relations. In 1980, he joined the law firm of Arnold & Porter, where he led the firm’s antitrust practice.

Baer served on the Lawrence University Board of Trustees from 2000 until 2012, including the last two years as vice chair, before joining the Justice Department.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Give. Watch. Share. 12-hour live Giving Day show celebrates all things Lawrence

With apologies to Lorne Michaels and the late great Don Pardo, “LIVE…from the Hurvis Center…it’s Giving Day.”

It’s the Little Apple(ton), not the Big Apple, but starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10, Lawrence University will stage its second annual “Giving Day,” a 12-hour live extravaganza webcast worldwide, featuring a cast of thousands, or at least dozens, ranging from President Mark Burstein and Mile of Music co-founder Cory Chisel to head football coach Rob McCarthy and the Lawrence Faculty Jazz Quartet.

Giving Day newsblog
Giving Day co-host Kasey Corrado (right) gets ready to try out a pair of hip waders courtesy of biologist Bart De Stasio (center) as he gives her a primer on doing research out in the field during 2014’s Giving Day live show..

The show will include interesting interviews and eclectic performances celebrating things happening at the college and showcasing the people and programs that make Lawrence distinctive.

Held for the first time in November, 2014, Giving Day is a special one-day opportunity for alumni and friends to show their support for Lawrence and its programs. Last year’s Giving Day, with the help of “game changers” who matched donations, raised $1.1 million for the college.

Kasey Corrado, Lawrence’s social media specialist, returns for her second stint as co-host of the 12-hour live show. She will be joined by senior Jon Hanrahan, a piano performance major from Johnsburg, Ill.

The webcast, available at go.lawrence.edu/givingday, will feature hourly “themes” on such topics as diversity, the arts, community service and of course, academics. From 7-8 p.m., everyone will be asked to don their thinking caps for a 60-minute trivia warm-up for Lawrence’s real deal 50-hour contest coming in late January.

Last year’s Giving Day was such a surprising success. Although we had planned for months, nothing really prepared us for what it turned out to be,” said Corrado, who is looking forward to reprising her one-part Barbara Walters, one-part Ellen DeGeneres role of a year ago. “I’m excited to see what happens this year.”

During the course of the show, Corrado will be more than just a passive host. She’s planning on learning a little Mandarin, creating a work of art with the help of sculptor Rob Neilson and boning up on her chemistry knowledge with chemist Stefan Debbert.

“I love that I get to co-host this show again,” said Corrado, whose first hosting stint came less than six months after getting hired at Lawrence. “As corny as it sounds, I feel like I’m getting to help make history at Lawrence.”

“Compared to last year, this is a far more ambitious undertaking, so I fully expect all kinds of interesting things to go wrong. It is 12 straight hours after all.”
— Rachel Crowl

Hanrahan, whose qualifications for his co-host role include four year’s performing with Lawrence’s improvisational troupe Optimistic Feral Children and three years as a trivia master, says his game plan is simple: Just dive in.

“I’m going to keep a curious mind turned on and gently nudge guests to the point where they have no choice but to share what they think, deep down, makes Lawrence such a weird, wonderful, impactful place,” said Hanrahan, who claims he’s made it through an entire trivia contest weekend without the aid of caffeine.Giving-Day_newsblog

Hanrahan says he’s excited about interacting with what he calls a line-up of “funny, smart, or strange people.”

Amid all the fun and games, Hanrahan wants the viewers to also appreciate the purpose of Giving Day.

“I really want our older viewers to come away with a reminder of what a transformative place Lawrence can be and I hope that current students get a glimpse of what goes on in the buildings that they don’t typically enter.”

Rachel Crowl, one of the masterminds behind this year’s Giving Day live show, will again handle all the off-camera chain saw juggling that goes with staging such a production.

“Compared to last year, this is a far more ambitious undertaking, so I fully expect all kinds of interesting things to go wrong. It is 12 straight hours after all,” Crowl said with a laugh.

Since July, Crowl has donned her executive producer/director/writer hat, scouring the campus for “talent.”

“I just used my institutional Rolodex to cajole, bribe and otherwise convince friends on the faculty and in the student body to appear on the show so we could cram as many facets of life at Lawrence as possible into 12 hours,” said Crowl, who promises a few surprises along the way. “I feel it’s my responsibility to put on a show that’s crazy entertaining, informative and one that makes the viewers want to support the institution.”

#LUGives15

According to Cara Gosse, director of annual giving, last year’s Giving Day trial run “surpassed our wildest expectations.”

“We were blown away by the way the college community pulled together to celebrate Lawrence, past and present,” said Gosse. “This year we have more than 200 Game Changers—alumni, parents and friends — who are providing matching funds to motivate others to support our students and the school they love. We’re so excited to do it all again. We want this year to be bigger, better, and bLUer.”

The complete Giving Day webcast schedule can be found here.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

A record breaker: Lawrence sets single-year fundraising mark

Lawrence University students may not realize it, but they have cause to celebrate. They will be the primary beneficiaries of a record-setting fundraising year by the college.

In the second year of Mark Burstein’s presidency, Lawrence set a one-year fundraising record with $34.7 million for the recently completed 2014-15 fiscal year. The previous high mark, $31.4 million, was established in 2008.furnraising-record_newsblog_1

As part of the overall fundraising total, the college also broke the record set last year for the Lawrence Fund, the college’s annual giving program, with $3.8 million.

More than 62 percent of the record fundraising total was designated for scholarships to support Lawrence’s “Full Speed to Full Need” campaign launched last year. The sole purpose of this focused effort is to provide financial aid to students of limited means. The college since has raised $22.6 million toward the full scholarship fund match.

“This record fundraising year is not only a tribute to President Burstein’s clear vision for Lawrence, but also a tribute to the generosity of spirit of those who make up the Lawrence community — students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, friends of the college and trustees,” said Susan Stillman Kane ’72, chair of the Lawrence Board of Trustees.

“The central theme of Mark Burstein’s vision, the value of the liberal arts and the importance of our educational mission in this rapidly changing world,” Kane added, “is enhanced by his goals of making a Lawrence education affordable for all students, sustaining a balanced university budget and creating an environment where a diverse student population can thrive. This resounding affirmation of his vision and the outpouring of philanthropic support this past year is unparalleled.”

Lawrence enjoyed a jump in its alumni donor participation rate (37 percent), the college’s first increase since 2004. Nationally, private baccalaureate arts and science colleges have seen the  average alumni donor participation rate drop every year from 2002-2014. According to the 2014 Voluntary Support of Education Survey, Lawrence’s alumni donor participation rate was nearly four percent above the national average, ranking 46th nationally among 204 peer institutions.

The college also saw a small increase in its retention rate, which measures the portion of prior year alumni donors who gave again the following year. At 80.3 percent, it was Lawrence’s second-highest mark since 2004. According to Target Analytics Index of Higher Education, the median retention rate for colleges and universities is 62 percent.

“This record fundraising year is not only a tribute to President Burstein’s clear vision for Lawrence, but also a tribute to the generosity of spirit of those who make up the Lawrence community…the outpouring of philanthropic support this past year is unparalleled.”
— Susan Stillman Kane ’72, chair of the Board of Trustees

“This is tremendous news because it provides a clear demonstration of how highly engaged and supportive the alumni community and friends of Lawrence are in securing the college’s future,” said Charles Saunders, ’84, a member of the Lawrence Board of Trustees and outgoing president of the Founders Club, a gift club which recognizes donors who contribute gifts of $1.000 or more annually to the Lawrence Fund. “This allows us to make significant progress on maintaining our affordability, which is the primary issue facing colleges and universities today.”

In Forbes’ 2015 Grateful Grads Index, which ranks colleges by the median amount of private donations per student over a 10-year period, Lawrence ranked 63rd nationally among all colleges and universities and was the highest ranked among Wisconsin schools.fundraising-record_newblog_2

The Lawrence Fund provides close to seven percent of the college’s annual operating budget and helps bridge the gap between what students pay in tuition and actual operating costs. The Lawrence Fund, along with endowment earnings, help reduce each student’s tuition by more than $10,000 per year. In addition to providing student grants and scholarships, the Lawrence Fund also supports everything from classroom resource and athletic equipment to sheet music for conservatory students.

The record-setting fundraising year included another milestone for the college, with membership in the Lawrence-Downer Legacy Circle crossing the 1,000-member threshold. At the end of the 2014-15 fiscal year, membership in the college’s planned giving program jumped by nearly 11 percent over the previous year, growing to 1,016 members.

“The act of including Lawrence in one’s estate plans is arguably the most profound endorsement anyone can make,” said Dave Mitchell, ’71, legacy gift planning co-chair of the Lawrence-Downer Legacy Circle. “The fact that membership in the Legacy Circle increased by more than 10 percent speaks volumes about Lawrence’s special place in our hearts.”

For the third consecutive year, the Lawrence Fund enjoyed 100 percent participation from all 32 members of the Lawrence Board of Trustees as well as all 31 members of the Lawrence University Alumni Association Board of Directors.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Welcome Alumni: Awards ceremony highlights annual Reunion celebration

When war erupted in Lebanon in the summer of 2006 between the Israeli military and Hezbollah paramilitary forces, Christopher Murray was serving as the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.

ChrisMurray_newsblog
Ambassador Christopher Murray ’75

Under his direction, one of the largest overseas evacuations of Americans in recent history, involving 15,000 citizens, was organized to secure safe passage from the war zone.

Murray will be among five Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer College alumni recognized for career achievements, contributions to the betterment of society or volunteer service to Lawrence June 18-21 during the college’s annual alumni Reunion.

More than 900 alumni and guests from 43 states and two countries are expected to attend the weekend festivities.

The alumni awards will be presented Saturday, June 21 at the Reunion Convocation at 11 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel. The event is free and open to the public.

Members of the Lawrence 50-Year Connection, a cohort of alumni who graduated at least 50 years ago from Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer, kick off this year’s Reunion activities with a series of panel presentations and small-group discussions.

The 2015 alumni awards and the recipients.

  • Lucia Russell Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award — Ambassador Christopher Murray, Class of 1975, Etterbeek, Belgium. The award recognizes a Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer graduate of more than 15 years for outstanding career achievement. The award honors the second president of Milwaukee-Downer College, one of the most beloved and influential figures in that college’s history

Murray has spent more than 30 years as a U.S. foreign service officer and currently serves as the political advisor at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, an appointment he received in the Fall of 2013. He previously spent three years as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of the Congo. It was during a three-year appointment (2004-07) in Beirut that he organized the American evacuation.

Other assignments abroad during his career have include chief of the political section at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, Syria; political officer at the U.S. Mission to the European Communities in Brussels, Belgium; economic officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo; and consular officer at the U.S. Embassy in Kingston, Jamaica.

He credits his Lawrence education for helping him navigate the evacuation in Lebanon.

“There were no rulebooks or instruction manuals, as a wartime evacuation of so many American civilians had never been done before,” said Murray, who earned his degree in government at Lawrence. “It was my Lawrence education that enabled me to put the pieces together, through messages to the American community, analyzing what it would take to keep the embassy open and running, and most importantly, securing the helicopters and U.S. Navy ships to carry American citizens to safety in Cyprus. It was truly a liberal arts education that enabled me to do this.”

  • The George B. Walter ’36 Service to Society Award — Dr. James Lace, Class of 1970, Salem, Ore.  The award recognizes an alumnus or alumna of Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer who best exemplifies the ideals of a liberal education through its application to socially useful ends in the community, the nation or the world. This award honors George B. Walter ’36, faculty member, coach and dean of men, whose work at the college and beyond was guided by his conviction that every individual can and should make a positive difference in the world.
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Dr. James Lace ’70

A still-practicing pediatrician with Childhood Health Associates of Salem after 37 years in the profession, and a professor of clinical pediatrics at Oregon Health and Sciences University, Dr. Lace has established a national and international reputation for advocacy on children’s health issues.

His involvement with orphans and other vulnerable children in Tanzania in 2002 led to his founding of the Yatima Group Fund to collect donations for his work there. He serves on the board of three children-related NGOs in Tanzania and is a consultant pediatrician at Mt. Meru Hospital in Arusha, Tanzania, providing teaching to improve the overall care of children in the region.

His compassion has led him to volunteer his medical skills in Sri Lanka after the 2004 tsunami, in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake and in Peru in 2014 after the 6.9 magnitude earthquake last August.

Earlier this year, the Salem Area Chamber of Commerce honored Lace with its annual Distinguished Service Award and in 2010, he was recognized with the Marion-Polk County Medical Society’s President’s Achievement Award.

Lace said Nobel Prize winner Dr. Albert Schweitzer, and his reverence for life in all forms, provided inspiration during his own medical pursuits.

“The image of the medical missionary working in some remote area of Africa resonated with me,” said Lace, a Russian studies major while at Lawrence. “I managed to keep the image with me while I pursued my medical career. I never lost my desire to reach out beyond my medical world here in the U.S. to work with patients and especially children in developing countries as a medical volunteer. I would encourage any student contemplating a career in medicine to reach out and learn as much as possible about the world we live in. We don’t need military revolutionaries to change the world. We need informed and compassionate people who dedicate their lives to promote the health and welfare of each person.”

  • The Gertrude Breithaupt Jupp M-D’18 Outstanding Service Award — Susan Nelson Goldsmith, Class of 1965, Phoenix, Ariz., and Sue Pepper Joys, M-D Class of 1951, Valpariso, Ind. The award recognizes an alumnus or alumna of Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer after his/her 15th Cluster Reunion who has provided outstanding service to Lawrence University. This award honors Gertrude Breithaupt Jupp, voted Milwaukee-Downer alumna of the year in 1964 for her long-standing service to the college as president of the alumnae association board, class secretary and public relations officer.
SusanGoldsmith_newsblog
Susan Nelson Goldsmith ’65

Goldsmith, a member of Lawrence’s Board of Trustees from 2001-07, has been a highly active volunteer for the college. She currently serves on the President’s Advisory Council, is a former member of the Legacy Circle National Council of Volunteers and served as an event volunteer for the “More Light!” campaign. She is the co-chair of her 50th reunion and also served on her 35th and 40th reunion committees.

Her volunteer energy extends into her local community as well where she has served on the Phoenix Education Commission, the Scottsdale School District Governing Board, the board of one of the country’s premier resident theatre companies and various political campaigns.

Goldsmith sees her engagement as doing her part to bend “the arc of the universe toward justice,” work she says that requires universal participation.

“I’ve been incredibly lucky to be able to choose the ways I can lend my weight to the bending,” said Goldsmith. “I’m motivated by the idea that education is huge part of creating the force needed.

“Lawrence is a place of possibility, to test and retest yourself, to find and grow into opportunities,” she added. “While I have fond memories of my time at Lawrence 50 years ago, it is not the past that ties me to Lawrence today. It is the present. Today’s students demonstrate that Lawrence continues to be a place of possibility for students and the college has identified opportunities for today’s young people.”

SuePepperJoys_newsblog
Sue Pepper Joys, M-D ’51

Joys has served Lawrence as a class agent since 2006, was a long-time volunteer with the Legacy Circle National Council and is a former member of the Milwaukee-Downer Alumnae Association Board of Directors. She played a leadership role in planning for her class’s 60th, 50th and 40th reunions. Professionally, she enjoyed a long and meaningful career working with the Girls Scouts of the U.S.A.

Much the same way Lawrence does, Joys said her Milwaukee-Downer liberal arts education emphasized service to society.

“That ignited in me a desire to use my skills in a vocation where I could make a difference,” said Joys, who had two brothers earn their bachelor’s degrees from Lawrence. “This led me to pursue a career with the Girl Scouts followed by many volunteer roles in my retirement years.

“I have been impressed with the many ways in which Lawrence has strived to ensure that the legacy of my alma mater lives on,” she added.

  • Presidential Award, Dale Schuh, Class of 1970, Stevens Point Presented to an alumnus or alumna of Lawrence University or Milwaukee-Downer College whose exemplary leadership and notable actions have contributed to the betterment of the entire Lawrence University community.

A dedicated and highly successful business leader, Schuh spent his entire 41-year professional career — one that began as an actuarial intern while still a student at Lawrence — with Sentry Insurance. He served as Sentry’s CEO and chairman of the board for his last 16 years with the company before retiring in 2013. Under his leadership, Sentry doubled in size and net worth, adding more than 300 employees to its home office.

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Dale Schuh ’70

Schuh’s commitment and vision have been highly valued as a member of the Lawrence Board of Trustees since 2008, where he serves as chair of the finance committee. He also led the search committee that resulted in the hiring of Mark Burstein as Lawrence’s 16th president in 2013. He and his wife, Annette, established a scholarship in 2009 to support first-generation college students attending Lawrence.

He has shared his expertise for more than a decade as a member of the board of directors of the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance, a nonprofit organization that provides Wisconsin voters and taxpayers, students, teachers, business leaders and public officials with accurate, objective information about the operation of Wisconsin’s government.

Despite what he calls “a whimsical and forever changing future,” Schuh says the impact a Lawrence education has had on thousands of graduates is the result of “a driving desire to perpetuate, cultivate, endorse and continue to make accessible
 the Lawrence learning experience.”

“Preservation of the essence of Lawrence requires continual nurturing of an intimate, welcoming and supportive community where engaged, individualized and rigorous learning is the norm and personal discovery its reward,” said Schuh.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.