125th Celebration

On Sept. 12, we celebrated the 125th anniversary of Hood College with a ceremony and plaque unveiling at Winchester Hall in Downtown Frederick, the original home of Hood College. Hood President Andrea Chapdelaine spoke about the College’s partnership with the Frederick community over the years and how Hood has changed and grown. Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner spoke about the history of Winchester Hall, where the Woman’s College of Frederick held its first class on Sept. 12, 1893.

President Chapdelaine also announced the new Martha E. Church, H’95 Center for Civic Engagement, which will be located in Root, Frederick County’s center for innovation and business growth, at 118 N. Market St. The Center for Civic Engagement, supported by a gift in honor of President Emerita Martha Church at the time of her retirement, will serve as the face of Hood in Frederick, facilitating connections with government, businesses, nonprofits and other community organizations.

View photos and a video from this special day!

**In honor of the 125th anniversary of Hood College, the Office of Alumni Relations and the Alumni Executive Board are partnering to build a “Hood for Good” campaign. We are striving for 125 hours of alumni civic engagement in local and national communities. Help us reach our goal by sharing with us the community service you have taken part in, either individually or as a member of a team or group! Submit your community service hours here.


125th Anniversary Events

To celebrate the 125th anniversary of the college, Hood will be hosting special lectures, symposiums and events throughout the year. The following alumni have already been on campus to help us celebrate this exciting year:

Aug. 24: Pat Chapple Wright ’66 gave a lecture titled “Biology in Your Future: Will Tropical Places Survive?”

Sept. 23: President Chapdelaine awarded Crystal J. Griner ’06 the President’s Medal of Obligation

Oct. 4: Joan B. Gillece ’76 gave a symposium on healing from trauma

Oct. 5: Susan A. Audino ’85, ’99 gave a lecture titled “From Plant to Medicine: The Remarkable Science of Cannabis and its Applications”

To see the complete schedule of events for the remainder of the year, click here.


Ruth Gabel Yeo ’33

At the age of 105, our eldest alum, Ruth Gabel Yeo from the Class of 1933 passed away peacefully on Oct. 1, 2017 at the Luther Crest Retirement Community in Allentown, Pennsylvania, with her family by her side. Ruth graduated from Hood with a bachelor’s degree in music education. Our condolences go out to the Yeo family.


New Partnership with Curious Iguana

To build its leisurely reading collection, the Beneficial-Hodson Library is embarking on a new partnership with Curious Iguana, a bookstore and gift shop in the heart of Downtown Frederick. Owners Marlene Roberson England ’86 and husband Tom opened Curious Iguana in September 2013. Since then, alumni Lauren Nopenz Fairley ’15, operations manager, and Bonnie Monnier ’16, marketing and events coordinator, have joined the Curious Iguana team and have helped make it a literary hotspot. This partnership will allow the library to take advantage of the stellar reading recommendations provided by the staff at Curious Iguana, and their in-depth knowledge of young adult fiction. We look forward to working with this local and alum-owned business.


Oral History Project

In 2013, staff and volunteers of the Hood College Archives created and published a book about the history of Hood College as part of the Campus History Series. While an additional 5 years is perhaps not enough to warrant a rewriting of the book, the 125th anniversary committee would like to capture additional history through oral interviews of alumni, staff and faculty. The committee is particularly interested in “fleshing out” archival research materials about the move to make Hood fully coeducational.

During Reunion Weekend, June 8-10, 2018, Mary Atwell, Hood College Archivist, will be setting up hour-long time slots for interviews. If Reunion Weekend is not a preferred option, you can arrange an interview at another time throughout the year to share your story. If you are interested in participating, or would like additional information, contact Mary at 301-696-3933 or atwell@hood.edu.


Upcoming Faculty-Led Trips

Shannon Kundey, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, encourages you to join her and fellow alumni as they travel to the Galapagos in May 2018 to explore the evolution of cognition and/or to South Africa in May 2019 to explore wildlife and culture. For the itinerary and more information about the nine-day excursion to the Galapagos, click here. For the itinerary and additional information for the 11-day excursion to South Africa, click here! For any other inquiries, contact Professor Kundey at kundey@hood.edu.

For information about the 2018 trips with the Alumni Travel Program, hosted by the Office of Alumni Relations, click here. These trips are open to alumni and friends of the college.


Frederick Charm Series

In celebration of the 125th anniversary, Colonial Jewelers, located in Downtown Frederick, is featuring Hood in the 2017 Frederick Charm Series. These charms are available in Sterling Silver for $195 and 14k Yellow Gold for $995. To place an order, please email: costumerservice@colonialjewelers.com.


Special Message for Choir Alumni

Hi, Choir Alum! My name is Sarah Tapscott, and I am a proud member of the Class of 2015. As you may know, this year Hood is celebrating 125 years. This Fall, we will also celebrate the 70th anniversary of Handel’s “Messiah” performed by the Hood College Choir. To commemorate this amazing tradition, I am asking choir alumni to share their favorite Hood College Choir memories. As a former member of the choir cabinet, I am dedicated to sharing the history of this tradition and the memories you made along the way!

To submit your stories, click here. Or, email me at sarah.tapscott12@gmail.com.

Your memories will be given to the Hood College Archives for others to enjoy and cherish. If you’d like anonymity, please let me know.

The 70th anniversary of the Handel’s “Messiah” will be held on Nov. 18 and 19 in the Coffman Chapel sanctuary.

-Sarah Tapscott ’15


Kathleen L. Berst, MBA’17 Receives Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Award

Kathleen Berst, a 2017 graduate of Hood College’s MBA program, has been awarded the “Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Award,” the highest award given to career civilian employees of the U.S. Department of Defense. It is given to “those employees whose careers reflect exceptional devotion to duty and whose contributions are of a significant value when it comes to the efficiency, economy or other improvements in Department of Defense (DoD).” Kathleen received the award for leading the Medical Countermeasures Test and Evaluation Facility, and ultimately for her recommendation that it be terminated. This challenging recommendation and her efforts resulted in more than $1 billion dollars of savings and cost avoidance for the DoD. Kathleen was recognized at the Pentagon Annual Award Ceremony, and her importance can especially be seen in the words of Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work, “You bring honor to the tradition of the civilian workforce and public service. Your dedication strengthens our country’s security and prosperity.”

Kathleen’s professional journey has taken her from a biologist in army labs to being an assistant vaccine manager in the Joint Vaccine Acquisition Program (JVAP), to project manager for the Medical Countermeasure Test and Evaluation Facility, to her current role as Deputy Commander of Acquisition for the U.S. Army Medical Material Development Activity (USAMMDA). Kathleen started her MBA at Hood in 2000, and the experience was impactful on her and her career. “Just starting my MBA courses changed everything. The more I learned in my courses, the more questions I asked at work.” This helped make additional connections, which eventually resulted in Kathleen’s first management role in 2001. “Most of what I was learning in my MBA courses was directly applicable to my new job. It was perfect! I was flying through my program and advancing at work.”

Two classes before wrapping up her program, Kathleen found out she was pregnant with her first child. Due to complications and a new work position, she delayed degree completion. Soon enough, Kathleen changed positions and saw how her MBA knowledge was contributing to her career. “My career was blossoming because of what I had learned in my MBA program, but my successful career had become a giant barrier that was preventing me from completing my MBA!” After speaking at Hood’s Project Management class in 2015, Kathleen’s desire to finish her MBA was revived. With the assistance of Professor David Gurzick, she reenrolled and completed the degree in 2017.

Her message to all is to “GET STARTED, ASK FOR HELP, AND KEEP LEARNING!” While many people are afraid to start or are terrified of failure, the solution is to “just move.” She emphasizes that asking for help is one of the best ways of figuring out your career choices. “Most people will be willing to share what worked and what didn’t work. I have a handful of mentors and coaches with different strengths, so I look to them for guidance in different aspects of life and work.”