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Please report the College news

Thank you for the College Report in the February/98 issue. [The College Report appears in copies of the magazine sent to College alumni and parents of undergraduates in October, February, and June.—Ed.] It is always exciting to read about the active intellectual environment of the College, the ever-broadening array of student activities, and the involvement of College students in cutting-edge research.

However, I was dismayed by the lack of news about important decisions that are being made right now about the future of the College. The proposal for the new curriculum was available in January, but the College Report says nothing about it.

College alumni need to know what the prospects are for the future of our community. Please keep us informed about these vital matters.

Kenneth A. Bloom, AB’92

Baltimore, Maryland

A report on revisions to the current undergraduate curriculum, approved by the College Council at its March 10 meeting, as well as a faculty reponse to the proposal to expand the College, can be found in “Chicago Journal” (pages 12-15).—Ed.

Underscoring undergrads

I enjoyed the College Report in the February/98 issue. It’s nice to see attention being paid to the undergraduates.

Kenneth L. Cutler, AB’70, MBA’70

Edina, Minnesota

Honeymoon in Hyde Park

As one who usually embraces updated looks, I found the current cover (February/98) to be a bit fuddy-duddy. The old, to me, actually looks better.

Two other comments: Dan Dry’s photographic portraits stand out. The Dwight Hopkins shot (“Investigations”) especially, but also the ones of Mary Jo LaDu (“Investigations”) and Kimerly Rorschach (“Chicago Journal”). Interesting use of lenses and perspectives.

Finally, why did you stop doing “Notice of Death Received” a few years ago? Like the obituaries in my hometown newspaper, this section keeps me tied to the University community, as I experienced it, as no other section can. Now, unless there is a biography to go with it, you don’t print it. Can we go back to giving simple notices?

Thomas E. Terrell, Jr., AM’80

High Point, North Carolina

Cover cover-up

I shall forever be puzzled by why the art staff, who design the cover, and the distribution department, who mail the magazine, can’t seem to cooperate. Doesn’t the art staff know where the label is going to be placed—or does the distribution department randomize the placement?

E. Grant Swick, MBA’64

Bartlett, Illinois

Whoops! Communication between the editorial staff and the mailing house should have prevented the snafu that forced us to place the mailing label over part of the February/98 issue’s cover lines—rather than over the contact information for Reunion ’98.—Ed.

A matter of (non U of C) degrees

I was looking over the Reunion ’98 material sent to my wife [Janet Benson Kaye, AB’48, AM’67], whose class is having its 50th this year, and I noted in the questionnaire that item no. 2 asks if any of our children have graduate degrees from the U of C but does not ask about graduate degrees from any other university. I notice in the class directory that Janet is listed as having her A.B. and an A.M. but is not listed as having any other degrees. I suppose that next year I will be listed as having an A.B. and that’s all.

I tried to decide if omitting references to “foreign” degrees was a matter of being parochial, or arrogance, and I have decided it is probably both.

Our daughter has a doctorate from Oxford. Janet has, in addition to her degrees from the U of C, another M.A. and a Ph.D. In addition to my undergraduate degree from the U of C, I have a Harvard M.B.A. and a J.D. To list people in the directory with only U of C degrees shown is, in our opinion, implying that only U of C degrees count, and that the other degrees a person might have only show that they wasted their time and their accomplishments are not worthy of mention.

Frankly, we do not think this is a very good way to keep a warm feeling for the University of Chicago in the hearts of alumni.

E. Donald Kaye, AB’49

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Blessed are the winemakers

Alcohol (wine, beer, spirits) is not an “unhealthy and socially destructive” element in our world today (“Letters,” February/98) unless it is abused. Those of us who enjoy a fine glass of wine (or two), who like a good beer (there are not too many of those around, unfortunately), or who delight in a fine single-malt scotch should not be written off as barbarians or, worse yet, as drunken slobs, the way Zane Spiegel, SB’49, SM’52, makes it sound.

Let’s not condemn the winemakers, for they shall continue to produce the pride of the grape, and they deserve to be written about, because theirs is a tough line of work, as my son-in-law Frank Spezzano of Philadelphia will verify. He makes his own wine (about 1,200 bottles a year) for his friends and family. Barbera, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon…these are names that have the sound of romance without any socially destructive effects. Too much of anything is bad for you, be it food, sleep, or (dare I say it?) sex.

Robert C. Morgen, PhB’47, MBA’48

Skokie, Illinois

“Class News” errors

The report concerning both Eliot W. Abarbanel, AB’73, AM’73, and Pat Danzon, PhD’73, in the February/98 “Class News” section was completely erroneous and had no basis in fact; it was based on misinformation sent to the Magazine by a third party without the knowledge of either alumnus mentioned. Also in February’s “Class News,” Sajal Sahay (AB’90)’s name was misspelled. The Magazine regrets the errors.

The Magazine invites letters on its contents or topics related to the U of C. Letters must be signed and may be edited. Preference is given to letters of under 300 words. Write: Editor, University of Chicago Magazine, 1313 E. 60th St., Chicago, IL 60637.