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@MSU Newsletter | November 2014 Home » @MSU Newsletter

Alumni Couple Stokes MSU's Capital Campaign with Significant Gift

MSU alumni Bob and Julie Skandalaris providing $10 million facilities gift to enhance Spartan football, golf and basketball programs

With the largest single gift ever received by Michigan State University athletics, a family with deep ties to MSU will be making an extraordinary impact on campus.
 
Alumni Bob and Julie Skandalaris are providing a $10 million facilities gift that enhances the Spartan football, golf and basketball programs, while providing momentum for MSU's universitywide capital campaign. The announcement was made last week.
 
"Donor support of Michigan State is positioning us to compete at the highest levels and to empower all students to receive a world-class education," said MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon. "This gift reflects the Skandalaris' understanding of how athletics can enrich and expand a Michigan State education. We are grateful to Bob and Julie for leading the way for others to invest in building a brighter future for all those who live, learn and benefit from MSU's programs."
 
MSU announced that Bob Skandalaris, who has served as a co-chair of President Simon's Campaign Cabinet during the quiet period of the current capital campaign, will continue in this role during the public phase of the campaign, which launched Oct. 24.
 
The campaign's goals, which will benefit all of MSU's colleges, units and programs, were announced after being approved by the MSU Board of Trustees at its meeting earlier that day.
 
"MSU and its intercollegiate athletics program have been important to our family, and we believe in the power of the student-athlete experience," said Bob Skandalaris. "We desire to provide our student-athletes with a championship-level experience while they work toward their degree."
 
He said a strong MSU is important to the overall health and economy of the state of Michigan.
 
"Developing the minds and character of the next generation of leaders - in athletics, the arts, business, education, agriculture, sciences, law, medicine and many other areas - is one of the most essential and rewarding contributions we can make to society," he said.
 
Read more.

MSU Alumni Association Honors Grand Award Winners

Michigan State University last month honored the 2014 Grand Awards recipients. The 10 individuals recognized were selected by the MSU Alumni Association Awards Committee.   
 
Follow the links for photos and biographical sketches of the honorees.

Got a Hankering for the Best Beef, Pork, Sausage and More?

MSU's Meat Lab offers high-quality meats from university farm-bred stock

The MSU Meat Lab is staffed by a team of 14 student employees who are learning meat processing from start to finish. The fresh and processed meats made from animals raised at the MSU farms are available for purchase by alumni, faculty, staff, students and the public.
 
New this fall, the MSU Meat Lab will be open four hours before kickoff on football Saturdays. If you’re interested in purchasing the freshest meats around for tailgating, simply order ahead and your meat will be ready for the grill!
 
For more information on what's available, visit the MSU Meat Lab Facebook page. To place your order, or to check availability of an item,  contact the Meat Lab by phone at  (517) 353-9773 or by email.
Note: Orders cannot be placed on the Facebook page.
 
The MSU Meat Lab is located in the northwest corner of Lot 43, behind the MSU Dairy Store.It is managed by MSU's Department of Animal Science and the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition. 

Be Sure to Include Sparty this Holiday Season

Mascot's 2015 calendar available now

Get a head start on your holiday shopping by purchasing Sparty’s 2015 Calendar for the Spartan fans in your life. Enjoy 12 months of photos featuring the world’s greatest mascot as well as the men’s basketball schedule, space to write reminders, birthdays and anniversaries, the history of Sparty and more!
 
All proceeds from calendar sales benefit the Sparty Mascot Program. Purchase yours today by visiting this website.

Sicily Awaits You

Book this April excursion and travel with MSU alumni and friends

Discover one of the most beautiful and unique regions in Italy on this eight-night tour of Sicily. Explore the medieval town of Taormina, the Roman and Greek influences of Agrigento, the majesty of Mount Etna and the ancient magnificence of Syracuse. 
 
The trip is set for April 17-25, 2015. Registration is $2,795 per person, plus airfare.
 
Visit the MSU Alumni Association travel website for details on this exciting trip. To request a travel brochure, simply fill out our online form.
 
 

Prolific Crime Writer Pens True Mystery Novel

 
R. Barri Flowers, '77, MA '80, has authored Murder of the Banker's Daughter: The Killing of Marion Parker. A historical true crime short, it tells the story of the 12-year-old’s abduction and murder in 1927. The daughter of a prominent Los Angeles banker, she was kidnapped from her junior high school in a bizarre ransom and revenge scheme. Two days later, the girl’s remains were left behind by a brutal teenage killer, William Edward Hickman. At the time, it was considered the “crime of the century” and rattled Americans nationwide.
  

MSU Alumna Writes Two New Children's Books

Janet Kloeckner Halfmann, '67, '79, has written a pair of new children’s books, Animal Teachers and A Rainbow of Birds. In the first, she introduces young audiences to the lessons little critters are learning from those around them. The second book retells a legend about how the birds gave the world its rainbows. Halfmann grew up on a farm in the Fowler and St. Johns region and now lives in South Milwaukee, WI.  

New Suspense Novel Set in Romantic Italy

David Wagner, ’65, has penned the recently released Death in The Dolomites. Set in Italy, it is the second mystery he’s written featuring Rick Montoya, a Rome-based translator with a knack for solving crimes. Wagner strives to immerse readers in the sights, sounds, cuisine and culture of sumptuous Italy. 
 
A retired U.S. Foreign Service officer, Wagner worked in Italy for nine years where he acquired his love for all things Italian, which is reflected in his writing. He served in the Peace Corps in Chile and taught high school English prior to entering diplomatic service. He is also the author of Cold Tuscan Stone

A Pair of Japanese Lovers' Tales Retold in Memoir

A novel by late MSU alumna Constance O’Keefe, '72, is a memoir tracing the true stories of a Japanese kamikaze pilot and his girlfriend Michiko Miyazawa. A Thousand Stitches follows Isamu “Sam” Imagawa’s military career and Michiko’s wartime factory experiences and the tumultuous life in war-ravaged Japan. 
 
The two alternating plots are held together symbolically by a senninbari, a belt with 1,000 stitches, which Michiko made for Sam when he was with the Japanese Kamikaze Corps.

See How Probability and Statistics Help Explain the Random

Mark P. Silverman, MS '67, has authored a new science book, A Certain Uncertainty: Nature’s Random Ways. From the analysis of electric bills, baseball statistics, and stock market fluctuations to the examination of clinical medical tests, aircraft flight, and the efficacy of crowd-sourcing, each chapter of the book unravels in understandable terms the relevant principles to facilitate the use of probability and statistics in scientific modeling and decision making.
 
In one such narrative, the author investigates the "wisdom of crowds" phenomenon in collaboration with the BBC's One Show, which engages large TV audiences in experiments. With numerous illustrations and detailed discussions, the book can be used by students and researchers interested in the interwoven tapestry of probability, statistics and physics.

Women's Cross Country Team Ranked #1 Nationally

For the first time in program history, the Michigan State women’s cross country team is ranked No. 1 in the NCAA Division I Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll, announced by the national office Oct. 21.

The Spartans were ranked No. 2 in the Week 4 coaches’ poll on Oct. 7 and overtook previous No. 1 Michigan after dominating the field in the Wisconsin Invitational, finishing more than 100 points ahead of second-place Arkansas (87-191).

Georgetown, Oregon, Michigan and Arkansas rounded out the top-five of the poll. Michigan State also moved into the top spot in the NCAA Great Lakes Regional Rankings. See the complete lists of national and regional rankings.

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New Dates for 2015 Grandparents University

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