Letters

Dr. Thibadeau

In 1970, as a student at IUP, I was enrolled in a class taught by the best teacher I ever had—Dr. Eugene Thibadeau. What I learned in that class probably saved my career, and quite possibly my life, as a teacher in the metropolitan New Jersey public schools! I will be forever indebted to Dr. Thibadeau, as will many of his students of the past thirty-eight years.

Gene recently retired, and I would hope that the university will take note of his great contributions to the teaching profession! Thousands of students have benefited from his instruction over the years, both in the undergraduate setting and in postgraduate programs offered summers at IUP and around the world. The monies generated through enrollment in his courses must be staggeringÑincome sorely missed in these challenging economic times.

Please take time to recognize this man's contributions to so many who now practice in our schools across America—his teaching has inspired us all.

Robert Mitchell ’71, Southport, Maine

Professor Bowes

As a member of the original twenty-four graduates in the Theater Department, I was saddened to see just a small squib in the back of the current magazine about the death of Professor Mal Bowes.

The Theater Department became the Theater Department in large part because of the vision of Professor Bowes. And while he spent thirty years of his life teaching and mentoring actors, he had been at IUP longer than 1976.

In the early seventies, theater classes were bunched under the English Department. It wasn't until 1976 when the theater professors broke away that the Theater Department was formed.

While I won’t diminish the important contributions of other staff and professors, the early stages of what is now the Department of Theater and Dance came about largely because of Professor Bowes’s hard work, tenacity, and vision. The renovation of Waller Hall in 1989 was done under his direction and care.

I am proud to be one of the three original graduates of the class of 1978. Sadly, at the recent dedication of the new performing arts center, none of the original twenty-four graduates—the Core 24—was acknowledged, even though many were aware that some of us were in attendance.

On September 18, 2008, I had the honor to visit Professor Bowes and his wife before the dedication. It was a very bittersweet time. Rich Snyder, one of my best friends from IUP, and I reminisced with Mal for about an hour, and when I left, I knew it would be the last time I would see him alive.

I read every issue of IUP Magazine, and it is rare that I see a full article about the Theater Department or its history. Mal Bowes deserves more than a mere five lines on page 29.

Victoria Blum Rosendahl ’78, Urbanna, Va.

What a School, What a Change

I recently traveled to Indiana on business and discovered what used to be my freshman dormitory at IUP is now gone. To my amazement, many familiar buildings were gone, but others were being constructed. IUP is truly getting a “facelift.”

IUP has some very notable alumni, but Mr. Chad Hurley has got to be right up at the top. His donation to the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex was truly great. I urge other alumni to support this project as well. The economic impact of this project will be tremendous for the region. Being an hour’s drive from Indiana, I definitely plan on seeing the finished project in 2011.

Everyone should be proud of the advancements and achievements IUP is making. The bottom line is that IUP is becoming more and more respected, and all the hard work the university has done in the past several years is really paying off. The education I received was second to none. I’ve sat across the table from coworkers and competitors that graduated from Virginia Tech, Penn State, Utah, Wisconsin, BYU, Michigan State, Shippensburg, and Slippery Rock, to name a few. The education I received from IUP is equal to, if not better, than theirs. IUP has taught me well, and I’m grateful to the Eberly College of Business and Information Technology and to what is now the Employment and Labor Relations Department. Go, Crimson Hawks!

P.S. IUP Magazine is great. Keep up the outstanding work!

Tim Shick ’04, M’05 DuBois, Pa.

Arizona Appreciation

I just wanted to write to you to let you know how impressed I was that the Alumni Office representatives came out to Tucson, Arizona, last Saturday for an Alumni Reception. This was the first time they ever came out here, and I was so thankful and appreciative that they did.

They updated us on the “goings on” of the university and had complimentary appetizers and a trivia contest. I couldn’t believe there are actually 200 Tucsonans who are IUP graduates! Thank you for coming out—I look forward to the next visit.

Laura Snyder-Ewens ’79 Tucson, Ariz.

“Going Places”

The following letter was sent to IUP Magazine Contributing Editor Bob Fulton:

Recently, I arrived at work to find an IUP Magazine opened to an article that you had written. The article had a picture of my brother applauding his diver’s performance at the Olympic Trials. One of my colleagues with a daughter that attends IUP saw the article and knew I would love to see it, so she left it on my desk.

Immediately, the picture brought a flood of emotions to me. Then, I read the wonderfully written article, and I actually cried. In just two short pages, you portrayed a very clear picture of my brother’s path to his most recent accomplishment of earning the Head Olympic Diving Coach title.

I have read many articles about my brother in the last year, but your article, “Going Places,” was the most well written of all. It was simple and easy to follow, yet, with your use of his quotes in just the right places, it helped me to experience the emotions he must have had while preparing for and living his dream. When I called him later to talk to him about the excellent article, he explained how you took a lot of time interviewing him and getting everything just right. I am nominating my brother for the Wall of Fame at our former high school. I must submit documentation, articles, and pictures to the committee in February. Your timely article will be right on top! Thank you for doing a great job.

Sandra Felice Greensburg, Pa.

Spring Weekend

The picture on page 21 of the Winter issue of IUP Magazine is a Sigma Kappa Spring Weekend Retreat at Cook Forest, Pa. in 1959.

Pictured are back row, left to right: Nancy Buzard ’61 (with trumpet), Mary Jane Sayers Williams ’58, Mary Lou Anderson Carnahan ’60, Dolores Jancech Carlson ’61 (deceased), Elizabeth Gray ’60, and Carole Umbarger Bogan ’60. Front row, left to right: Carolyn Drushel Hervey ’60 and Judith Snare Gabbard ’60 (deceased).

Thanks for including the picture in All about Alumni and for the inquiry of place and participants.

Carolyn Drushel Hervey ’60 Allison Park, Pa.

Bill Allison Found!

To Ann Butekoff ’91, of Parma, Ohio, whose letter was published in the Winter issue, and to Karen Kos ’79 of Tucson, Ariz., whose letter was published in 2005:

Dear Fans of Bill Allison,

He is alive and well near Pottsville, Pa. We’ve been friends from the age of five, I think, and we graduated high school together.
Bill was not in college while we were, but he lived it, vicariously, when he’d come to visit and play for us at IUP, most often in the dorm lounges, or in the Union. I was an art major in Stewart and Mack my first two years (’73-’75), which is when Bill started coming out to visit.

His singing is still beautiful, magical, and deeply heartfelt, although I have not heard much, live, in recent years, as I live in Pittsburgh. I’m sure he would love to hear from all of you, his fan club, and maybe we can convince him to go on tour through Parma, Ohio, and Tucson.

Kitty Spangler ’77 Pittsburgh

Bill in His Own Words

Thank you so much for contacting me and sending me the copies of letters from IUP Magazine. Kitty Spangler contacted me before she wrote to you. Here’s a brief update:

I loved playing at IUP! To think that people still remember me is awesome. I made my “début” as a performer at a coffee house in the basement of the Governors Quad in 1974. For the next few years I played at various locations around campus, and I believe my last performance at IUP was in ’79 or ’80 in Fisher. Even though I never attended IUP as a student, I always viewed IUP as my home away from home and where I truly received my education. I was always so grateful, and at times overwhelmed, at how kind and gracious everyone was to me in how they received me. Such great memories!

I still have a write-up by Germaine Kropilak from the IUP newspaper of one of my performances at the Student Union that I keep framed and hanging above my piano. I’m so grateful to my dear friend, Kitty Spangler, for inviting me to IUP and being instrumental in arranging for me to perform for the first time.

I still play piano but, except for a rare and very occasional “gig,” I no longer play profes•sionally. Life kind of led me in a different direction. For the last twenty-some years I’ve been working in Human Services, working with individuals with mental challenges and mental health and behavior issues. I love the work I do. There are all sorts of ways to make music.

I still play piano every day, and I still write, and I still sing. And I still remember IUP. Thank you for such great memories. And thank you for remembering me.

Bill Allison