Monday Minute, April 18, 2011

Colleagues,

The college community had both good and bad things happen last week. First the good: Last Thursday, we had a full house of students, alumni, faculty, staff, and friends in the Campus Club for our Design in 7 event, in which 7 representatives of our 7 disciplines each had 7 minutes to talk about their work and their world. The speakers all kept to their time limit and their comments ranged from the serious to the hilarious, all focused on what our disciplines do to improve the quality and conviviality of people's lives. Everyone seemed to thoroughly enjoy the evening, hosted by our Design Student and Alumni Board, and it has already become an eagerly awaited, annual affair.

Another positive event occurred on Saturday, when the Fashion and Business Group (FAB) held a fashion show in the Rapson Hall court in conjunction with the Medical School Student Council, in which several of our students designed both street wear and haute couture out of medical scrubs, with medical students as models. This event, too, packed the house and successfully raised a lot of money for the Smile Network International, a Minneapolis-based non-profit that funds facial surgeries to repair birth defects in children whose parents could otherwise not afford it. Sophomore apparel design student, Jenifer Voth, won the runway competition, and the energy in the room reinforced for me the growing interest in design among the general public and the healthcare community.

On the negative side: many of you have by now heard that two of our students - Sarah Bagley and Katelynn Hanson - were among three people walking on a sidewalk in Dinkytown this weekend who were struck by a drunk driver in a hit-and-run accident. Fortunately, neither had life-threatening injuries, although Sarah is now recuperating from knee surgery and our thoughts are with her. A new law will go into effect this summer requiring breath-testing ignition devices in the cars of people who have lost their licenses because of a DWI arrest, which is a good move, although it didn't come soon enough to have possibly prevented this crash.

To end on a positive note, Metropolis magazine has agreed to run the blogs of our students working in Haiti. Experiences like these make me think that, while bad things happen, the good ultimately prevails.

Tom

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