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  • Author:
    Robert Bao
  • Published:
    Spring 2012


Thrilled to read your cover story, “MSU’s Media Sandbox” (Winter 2012).Although the communication landscape has changed, you still need to know how to properly engage an audience in a creative way.  that’s a skill I learned from the College of Communication Arts and Sciences.

As a student, I became an Impact DJ, program directed the 10th East Lansing Film Festival and landed a music internship with Late Show with David Letterman.
Imagine what opportunities today’s students will have with the Media Sandbox!

the value of my MSU degree continues to rise as new creative minds graduate and continue the tradition of great storytelling, Spartan style.

Kristen Case, ’07
New York, NY


When I saw “The Robins of MSU” my  first thought was, “I could have done that.” A er all, I knew George Wallace when I was a science writer at MSU. But Gary Morgan took a  different and much better, more comprehensive tack. I think it’s probably the best science story ever in your magazine.

Charlie Downs
East Lansing


Loved your story on the Coral Gables, where I had my  first date with Monty (Marsha Montgomery, ’64), my wife of 48 years. I remember the Excalibur luncheons and wearing the blue blazer.Monty and I were on the staff of Case Hall, the  first coed residence hall in the U.S. Memories were indeed made of this.

Tom Plough, ’63, MS ’65, PhD ’71
President Emeritus, Assumption College Traverse City

I doubt I ever had three dates with a fellow without being taken to the Coral Gables. Times were austere in the early 1940s and very few students had cars, so we usually rode the bus (from Campbell Hall).  is past December, two younger friends took me to the Gables for Sunday brunch—my  first return in 67 years. I was delighted. What a joy to see the beautiful dance floor, even if it wasn’t the original. I told my hosts, “Your dad used to bring me here to dance!”

Barbara Rickerd Thompson, ’44
Grosse Pointe Park

The Coral Gables helped launch many careers in hospitality, including mine. In my junior year, owner Alex Vanis and Tony Conti hired me as a bartender in the Show Bar. I had no experience but they figured I could open quarts of beer. It was an opportunity to learn a vital part of hospitality. After MSU, I became the Food and beverage manager at the Coral Gables Chippewa Hotel in Manistee. Six months later I was promoted to general manager and was well on my way.

Dr. Ronald Cichy, ’72,
MBA ’77, PhD ’81
Director and Professor,
The School of Hospitality Business at MSU

Well done on the Coral Gables story. The photo of the Excalibur meeting (p. 42, Winter 2012) shows my late roommate Phil Frank, ’65, the beloved State News cartoonist, in the foreground. It was the 1965 yearbook (not 1961).

David Wagner, ’65
Placitas, NM

Memories were certainly made at the Coral Gables for me and three other members of the band,  the Statesmen. In 1963-64, we played every Wednesday and Friday. Our hit song “Roo-Buh-Doo-Buh Doo” was used in a commercial 40 years later!

Jay Lerner, ’66
Omaha, NE


My late husband, Bruce Sneider, was a Gables regular in the 1950s and once met singer Mel Torme there. Mel asked Bruce and a buddy if they could “fix him up” with a girl after the show. the guys were more than happy to oblige.Years later, Bruce and I met Mel after he performed at the Wharton Center. When reminded of this story, Mel asked for her name—he wondered if she had become one of his many wives!

Gaynel Sneider


Re MSU’s plan to assign street addresses to all campus buildings.In 1948, the National Service Fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, Convinced MSU that the streets needed consistent names. We suggested a list of names and most were adopted. Too bad they didn’t add numbers to the buildings at that time. Just a little ancient history.

James R. Carr, ’50
Grand Rapids

BUBBA & THE 1960s

Thanks for your very nice tribute to Bubba Smith (Fall 2011).the 1960s was a great time to be at MSU. One reason I chose to go there was their winning football team. I got to know some of the more colorful players on the team (though not Bubba). Two MSU gal pals and I still reminisce about the football parties (which were pretty tame back then).

Margie Bauman, ’64
Knik, AK

At the 1966 homecoming pep rally, Duffy Daugherty talked about a sports article that implied Bubba Smith was overrated since he had only made three tackles all year. Duffy pointed out that the opposing teams had only run around Bubba’s end three times all year. Bubba and his teammates were a very exciting and colorful team.

William N. Jones, ’69
Miami Shores, FL


The quality of the MSU Alumni Magazine has consistently improved over the years and has reached the high point.  the magazine excels in all areas— design, content, creativity and overall quality. You do a great job keeping us informed of university issues and emphasizing people, thus building a sense of pride and strengthening our relationship with fellow alums.

Chet Francke, ’54,’75, ’82