Summer 2006


So Darn Cute

marginalia illustrationLike Shocker basketball fans everywhere this past season, KSNW Channel 3 newscaster Anita Cochran ’85 watched with glee as the WSU team predicted to finish fifth in the Missouri Valley Conference got to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 in a 26-9 season. Although George Mason ended the Shockers’ run for hoops glory March 25 in Washington, D.C., Shockermania was still high when Cochran was spotlighted April 5 in The Wichita Eagle’s people series called Ten Questions With... . It’s the No. 10 Q & A that particularly captured our attention: “Who would you want to be your leading man in a romantic comedy? ’WSU’s Matt Braeuer. Who cares if he can act — he’s so darn cute!’”




An Artful Top Ten
marginalia illustrationThe spring/summer issue of the national magazine Public Art Review has ranked WSU’s Martin H. Bush Outdoor Sculpture Collection among the 10 best campus art collections in America. “The national ranking makes a real statement,” says David Butler, director of WSU’s Ulrich Museum of Art. “It’s like being in the Sweet 16.“ This summer, Butler will leave WSU to take a similar position at the Knoxville Museum of Art in Tennessee. Other top 10 schools include Texas Tech, MIT, the University of California, Arizona State and Johnson County Community College in Kansas.




All Ears
marginalia illustrationLeanne (Ralston) Chase ’83/94 is the proud owner of Misha, a 6-year-old, 100-pound, Black Russian Terrier therapy dog. Twice a week during the school year, Chase and Misha, who is certified through Therapy Dogs International, visit Wichita’s L’Ouverture Elementary School to help children improve their reading skills by listening — patiently and uncritically — to about a dozen kids read their favorite books aloud. Chase, a retired accountant, first learned about the Reading Education Assistance Dogs program four years ago when she was tutoring part time at the elementary school. Since then, she and Misha have been all ears.




New “Do” for Wu
marginalia illustrationWuShock will be sporting a new look this fall, says Ron Kopita, WSU vice president for the division of campus life and university relations, the division that oversees administration of the mascot and cheerleaders. WuShock’s updated costume will mirror more closely the WuShock logo, Kopita says, adding that it also will be safer to wear. The current costume is heavy, limits sight and restricts movement — plus the head falls off, a definite mascot downer. Others helping oversee Wu’s costume makeover are Jim Schaus, director of athletics; Debbie Kennedy ’94, executive director, WSU Alumni Association; and Keli Barron, associate director, Heskett Center.




Pro vs. Joe
marginalia illustrationNew Kansas Sports Hall of Fame inductee and former WSU and NBA great Xavier “X Man” McDaniel ’87/96 may not list this accomplishment on his sports vitae, but this spring he lined up with four other professional athletes to face off against a group of average Joes on an episode of Spike TV’s Pros vs. Joes. Since the show may be new to you, the premise is this: one pro versus one Joe in a unique, sports(-like) challenge. For example, X Man and his Joe vied to see who could shoot the most hoops in two minutes. That’s it? Not exactly. It was a moveable hoop, one that ascended into arena rafters as the Joe/pro duo shot at it. X Man came out victorious. The show did not. After maybe five episodes, Pros vs. Joes was cancelled.



Testing Dreams
marginalia illustrationWhen Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner first flies in 2007, Mike Carriker ’78 will be the pilot. Carriker, who lives in Everett, Wash., with his wife Karen fs ’79 and their two children, is the chief test pilot for the 787, which is the first all-new plane Boeing has designed since its 777, launched in 1990. For the past few years, much of Carriker’s time on the job has been spent on the ground — in a 787 flight simulator.



Newsworthy info about alumni and university personalities and happenings — all packaged up in bite-size reads.