Fall 2008



Sweet Obsession

An age-old obsession, it was used by the Maya and Aztec as money and in royal and religious rituals. It's made fortunes for some, the Ghirardellis, Nestles and Hersheys among them. And it seems it's always counted, along with jewelry and flowers, as one of the truest gifts with which to complement love - chocolate.

Captains Future: Composites, Biomaterials — And Beyond!

What collective could be summoned to challenge the disintegrative forces massing to imperil our city's economic well-being — indeed, readying to invade our own frail-fleshed human bodies? Certainly no ordinary partnership of entities! But when the crossing of intellectual powers and scientific collaboration brings into being the mighty Captains Future — well, that's a different story.

All the Way to China

They may not be globetrotters the likes of Monty Python's Michael Palin, but if Jason Harper '06 and Justin Nicholes '07 have their way, eventually they may come pretty darn close.

No Humble Pie

A funny thing happened to Dan and Frank Carney on their way to business degrees at Wichita State University. Both were sidetracked, at least temporarily, by the chore of building an international business empire.



Readers write in to comment on The Shocker and its contents.


Shock Talk

Shockers everywhere, at events long ago or happenings just the other day, always have something interesting to say.


Director's Corner

Involvement with the university is not confined to any particular group, says Executive Director Debbie Kennedy.

President's Corner

President Dan Unruh welcomes members and guests to another year of academic excellence and fond memories from Wichita State.

Drivin' with WuShock

When motorists spot a Fahnestock Plumbing HVAC & Electric vehicle, they not only see the Wichita-based company's logo, they see WuShock, too.


Catch up on all the latest goings-on at your alumni association — there are lots of them!

What's Your Favorite RSC Memory?

For the past 50 years, Wichita State's Rhatigan Student Center has served as the heart of campus. It would be nearly impossible to be a WSU alum and not have used the center in some memorable way.


WuShock Hits 60

Wichita State is planning a big bash for the university's one-of-a-kind mascot.

RnR: Shocker Excitement

Rockin' the Roundhouse brings excitement of a different kind to Charles Koch Arena.

Beautifully Challenging

Beijing was in the world's spotlight for most of the summer, but for 52 Wichitans Taiwan has been their focus.

Artful Presence

In 1999, The Shocker asked groups of Wichita State alumni and faculty to cast their ballots for the "Top 40 Shockers
of All Time." Mira Merriman, art historian and professor emeritus of art and design, came in at No. 32.

Prime Selling Points

Bobby Gandu '02/06 is fired up about his latest career move. After serving as WSU's interim director of admissions for the past 10 months, he was named to the position on a permanent basis in early August.


These Gleanings entries survey the current university scene and feature original illustrations by Scott Dawson ’86.


Shock Art

Brad Ruder '92. Ruder, a graphic designer who lives and works in Wichita, came up with a bold concept for the 2008 Tallgrass Film Festival poster.


Hurricane Ike

Hurricane Ike made U.S. landfall at Galveston, Texas, Sept. 13 at 2:10 in the morning. Reporting in from the Houston area are three Shocker alums.


From Studio B to ABC

Jeremy Hubbard '96 was familiar to WSU students and faculty in the mid-1990s. Now his face — and voice — are familiar to millions of early morning TV viewers nationwide, too.

Tenacity Rules

Mohammad Awad-Eljied '00 knows the value of hard work and tenacity — and what a difference an education makes.

Turning Heads

Lynn (Kincheloe) Stephan '64 was the first to call The Shocker magazine offices about seeing a Shocker concrete truck on the streets of Wichita.


An Engineering Icon

For the past 60 years, a research resource on the southeast side of campus has steadily been at work, contributing untold advancements to the world of manufacturing.

Shocker to Shocker

Former Wichita State University President Clark Ahlberg accepts funds and a sympathy card from Ingalls Elementary School student Carl Tucker after the Oct. 2, 1970 airplane crash.


The Marshall Plan

Wichita State's 2008-09 men's basketball schedule is highlighted by 16 home games, a trip to the Old Spice Classic and games against at least three 2008 NCAA tournament opponents.

State-of-the-Art Swings

Construction on the Hartman Golf Practice Facility, made possible by a lead gift from Wichitan Wink Hartman and several other donors, has begun at WSU's Braeburn Golf Course.

No Messin' Around

Melissa Granville certainly isn't the first player that Shocker coach Chris Lamb has plucked from California, a well-known volleyball hotbed, but she is probably the most honest about her initial feelings toward Wichita.


Class Notes

Comings, goings, appointments, retirements, honors, accolades and other personal alumni news.


The Last Drawing

As an artist, Bruce Conner fs '53 explored some of our world's most soaring contraries: the sacred and the profane, good and evil, light and shadow, white and black

Grace Notes

It's difficult to find a photo of Betty Welsbacher '61 without a smile lighting up her face. It's that sunny disposition and zest for life that those who knew her remember so fondly.

Family Tradition

In 1983, WSU's Center for Entrepreneurship published The Chandlers of Kansas, a book about the state's premier banking family — proudly including Charles "Chuck" Q. Chandler.

Inventive Educator

Paul Fiacco '96 was an inventor. His air-filtering creation, the Purifan, is a fixture in many restaurants and bars, where it removes second-hand smoke and improves air quality.

In Memoriam

These WSU alumni and university friends leave lasting legacies.


Different Views

WSU professor of anthropology Dorothy Billings shares her thoughts on the personal side of international relations.


Breaking Through

Willie "Jeff" Jeffries made history at Wichita State when he was hired before the 1979 season as the first African-American head football coach at an NCAA Division 1-A university.

Public Accolades

Kathy (Bradshaw) Sexton '89/92 has added another accolade to her growing list of honors in the public service arena.

Active Alumna

Thinking of great experiences at Wichita State is easy for Julie King Gomez '85.



From the ins and outs of WSU parking to a champion Shocker golfer, Marginalia offers tidbits from all over -- with illustrations by Wade Hampton.