The Mash — today

All-Campus Music Festival
featuring student bands & special guest Bear Hands
Friday, September 7, noon-8pm





noon-1pm Mattabassett String Collective with special guest President Roth

2pm Mel Hsu    2:30pm Open Mic     3pm The Blooming Youth

3:30pm Open Mic   4pm Faith Harding   4:30pm Open Mic


2pm Yeoman’s Omen    2:30pm Open Mic     3pm Featherwood Bee

3:30pm Open Mic    4pm North Paw    4:30pm Open Mic


2pm Bones Complex    2:30pm Open Mic     3pm The Taste

3:30pm Open Mic    4pm Freestyle Collective    4:30pm Open Mic


5-8pm Bear Hands (with Treasure Island opening)

& all-campus barbecue!

THE MASH, inspired by Fete de la Musique, also known as World Music Day, will highlight the student music scene at Wesleyan and kick off the year-long campus and community-wide Music & Public Life initiative.


Library Research Assistance for Theses & Essays; Thesis Carrels


Need help researching your thesis or essay? The attached document has information about workshops that are available in Olin Library from September 24th through September 27th.


Also, if you’re writing an honors thesis, don’t forget to apply for your carrel online. Follow this link for more information about the application process: The deadline to apply for a thesis carrel is September 17th at 4:00 p.m.


Any questions should be directed to the Library Office: 860-685-3844



Celebrating Students 2013: Kaya Ceci


Kaya wrote the following toward the end of her stay with the SKIP Program, Trujillo, Peru.

Although I was warned at the outset by veteran SKIP volunteers of how quickly my time here would come to its inevitable end, here I sit; utterly incredulous that, by this time next week, I will be running through a customary human-tunnel of volunteers until I am out the door for good. But considering the impact these last two months have made on my young adult life, something tells me that isn’t quite true. Whether it is through this specific organization or perhaps another with a similar philosophy and objectives, my work in trying to ensure that marginalized children have access to an education and are supported by economically and emotionally stable families will not end here or now.  Working in the Psychology department here at SKIP (Supporting Kids in Peru) has allowed me the opportunity to explore and understand to the best of my abilities a reality unjustly faced by so many children and their families, a reality that is inherent to the endemic poverty–both economic and academic–that plagues cities like and far worse off than Trujillo, Peru. 

While not entirely in tune with my initial goal to see the practical application of psychology from an authentic Peruvian perspective  (which I have been led to believe does not actually exist), my experience has been invaluable in that it has forced me to critically reevaluate such preconceived notions and expectations. The table here in Trujillo, Peru seemed to be set for a smorgasbord of self-exploration and opportunity for growth, that is to say, worthy substitutes for my previous ideal objectives. My role as the sole Psychologist’s Assistant consisted of co-leading and observing various adolescent and parent therapy groups, generally made up of 3-4 clients. I worked with children ranging from ages 5-12 who were mandated to receive group therapy sessions due to behavioral management issues in the classroom, as well as with their parents, who lacked the assertive parenting techniques that could help prevent these interventions from happening in the first place. The focus of the adolescent groups was essentially social skills training–interactive play therapy that fostered interpersonal communication, behavior and emotion management techniques, and just an attempt to instill  basic values they should have learned years ago en casa but unfortunately did not have due to the lack of support at home.

With so much against them, I found it of the upmost importance to begin expanding the horizons of these families to accommodate different visions of reality. Through the opportunity to co-lead each group and have input into the workshops, each was carefully designed to provide the participants the tools they needed to escape the vicious cycle of poverty through valuing their education and the hard work and determination necessary to build better lives. This support and mediation through solution-focused therapy sessions was my first real opportunity to not only see the practical application of psychology, but be a part of it as well. This experience was rife with ups and downs but ultimately granted me the invaluable opportunity to make a small, yet lasting, impact on their process of building a more stable and healthy familial situation and strengthening the drive to never give up on their dreams. I now return to complete my degree with a newfound confidence in my abilities to adapt and contribute meaningfully to the field I wish to go into and bring with me a new perspective on the reality of struggles unjustly faced by the most loving children I have ever known.

Celebrating Students ’13: Jefferson Ajayi

This past summer, instead of going back to my peaceful little town of Richmond Heights Ohio, I decided to go to the city of Chicago for an internship at the Diamond Headache Clinic. This clinic specializes in headache, migraine, and other pain disorders associated with the head and neck. I worked there the previous summer as well, specializing in a procedure known as biofeedback. Although the name might sound very complicated and expensive, the procedure is very simple and anyone can do it whenever they want to.

Biofeedback is essentially a form of meditation. At the clinic I wired patients up to a machine that graphically displayed the patients’ body temperature and muscle tension in the hands, shoulders, neck, and head. The idea behind this procedure is to get the patients to put themselves in a very relaxed state in order to reduce blood flow in the blood vessels in the head (vasoconstriction) and increase blood flow in the hands (vasodilation). In patients who have tension type headache, vasoconstriction of the blood vessels in the head through biofeedback have been shown to significantly reduce the pain associated with the tension type headache. The procedure involves deep breathing exercises using diaphragmatic breathing. This deep breathing oxygenates the body and puts the body in a state of relaxation with allows the mind to have more control over the body.

When the patients saw the graphical results of their muscle tension and hand temperature, many of them realized that they could control their hand temperature and muscle tension just by focusing on it. Many of the patients, who practiced this exercise on their own, were able to dramatically reduce muscle tension and increase the temperature of their hands, almost on command. These findings were very significant to me because it reinforced the idea that people can literally do anything they really put their minds and spirits into. One just has to see what they really want and pursue it. 

In addition to the biofeedback procedure, I also did research for my thesis on the environmental correlations to headache and migraine. I designed a questionnaire that broke the environmental proponents of headache and migraine into macro and micro proponents. The macro proponents pertained to things like community setting, climate, weather, etc. The micro proponents pertained to things like diet, stress management skills, exercise, etc.  The questionnaire was about the impact of where one lives and the impact of what one does to him or herself on headaches and migraines. I learned that the leading causes of headache and migraine in these patients were poor stress management skills and the type of lifestyles they were living, as in diet, level of exercise, and personality type. My conclusions were validated by the information presented National Headache Society conference, which was an excellent learning opportunity and greatly helped me with my research. Overall the past two summers taught me that I can do anything that I envision and that one must maintain a balanced and positive relationship with their mind, body, spirit and others in order to live a happier life. It’s the little things that always add up in a person’s life that play a significant role in determining one’s overall quality of life.


Celebrating Students ’13: Daniel Nass

In the weeks leading up to my trip to India, I often tried to imagine what my experiences there would be like. Mostly, I pictured myself on a street corner amid a sea of traffic, trucks and bicycles and people a blur around me. Anonymous, alone, and adrift in an impossibly foreign land. With diarrhea trickling down my leg.

A large part of this uncertainty was due to the fact that I wasn’t actually studying abroad: I took a leave of absence from my beloved Wes and organized the trip on my own. My plan, which only started to come together a few days before my departure in early February, was to travel throughout the northern half of the country WWOOFing. Fortunately for me, I was primarily interested in using WWOOF (Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms) as a means of meeting locals and fellow travelers, rather than mastering sustainable agriculture—among the many tasks the farmers set me to work on were weeding, watering, digging holes, filling in holes, hauling rubble, sanding plaster, and painting a swimming pool in the middle of the desert.

My hosts came from many walks of life: a poor family who made a living growing wheat and rice, a successful entrepreneur who was in the process of building a luxury hotel on his property, an elderly couple with a vegetable garden and a modest collection of fruit trees, a businessman who spent his life traveling in the western world and decided to celebrate his retirement by planting an orchard. I began in the arid state of Rajasthan on a farm languishing in the desert heat, but my later travels took me into the foothills of the Himalayas where mountain snowmelt feeds lush forests. Between my stays on five different farms, I visited many cities and took in sights such as the Taj Mahal, the Golden Temple in Amritsar, and Mumbai’s skyscrapers and sprawling slums. 

I felt genuinely welcomed into many of my hosts’ homes and communities. I attended two wedding parties, joined in a town’s celebration of the Holi festival, and ate lunch in a remote village where I had the dubious honor of being the first white person most of the villagers had ever laid eyes on. I helped with cooking, cared for children, and talked to people from many walks of life, from rural farmers to middle-class suburbanites to a member of the Indian Parliament. Miraculously, I emerged from India in early May having never suffered the digestive ailments I anticipated, but my trip defied my expectations in other ways I never could have expected.

Celebrating Students ’13: Kaitlin DeWilde

            This past summer, I decided to take a bit of a risk, and I spent six weeks learning how to take a bucket shower, haggle incredibly cheap prices in a foreign language, and, hopefully, a little bit of something to write in my senior thesis. On June 9, I got on a plane and headed out to Sierra Leone, to my parents’ great concern. Sierra Leone is a small country in West Africa, famous for its diamonds, child soldiers, and the bloody conflict that razed across it from 1991-2002. Although the conflict has ended, Sierra Leone still resides close to the bottom of every global list involving money and fiscal prosperity.

            But I did not entirely think about what colossal poverty would mean when I got on a plane leaving London Heathrow, heading out to a new continent, on my own, with people I had never met before awaiting my arrival. In retrospect, it was a bit stupid; if I had not gotten incredibly lucky and been adopted by a generous local family, I would have had a much rougher time. But even with a family that cooked for me, took care of me, and introduced me to more friends than I could talk to, I still had some immense challenges to overcome. In the space of six weeks, I was bit by a dog (yes, I got my rabies shots), infected by a parasite (thank god for cheap medical care), and had about $350 stolen. Over there, that’s an awful lot of money, and my friends and family were absolutely floored at the amount. Every day, I met new challenges, from learning a language, to getting yelled at every time I walked down a street, to being squeezed into the back of a rickety bus and praying that it managed to avoid the open gutters.

            But it’s not all bad. I met some of the most incredible people I will ever meet and built relationships that I think will last me the rest of my life. Oh, and I did the research for my senior thesis. Even though that was the salient reason for flying across the Atlantic, I had so many intense experiences in Sierra Leone that academics can start to feel like a detail. I did forty interviews with native Sierra Leoneans aged 18-28, trying to start gauging the effects of growing up with omnipresent violence on social and ethical development. I asked questions like “How would you define the word “victim?” and “Do you think war is necessary or inevitable?”

            I don’t yet know what academic knowledge I’ve gleaned from this trip – the many requisite hours for a senior thesis over the next year will reveal that. But I do know that I learned how to wash my clothes by hand, I learned what foods to eat when you’re sick and without medicine, and I learned a new, stronger definition of what constitutes a relationship and binds together a community.

Note from Dean Brown–9/2/12

Hey 2013’ers,

Welcome back to your senior year!  That “time flies” has never been truer:  I can’t believe you’re in your last year, can you?  It’s amazing—and wonderful.   You all have traveled far over the last three years and have a great year left to go.  Make the most of it! 

I hope you have had the weekend to get settled into your houses and apartments, and are ready for the start of classes tomorrow.  Many of you will start in on your capstone experience this semester—whether that be a thesis, essay, project, research, or performance—while  others look forward  to it in the spring.  Whenever you do it, it’s a great opportunity to dive headlong into focused intellectual and creative exploration and synthesis.  Go for it! 

 Drop/Add also begins tomorrow, and ends on Sept. 14.  No grading mode changes or course deletions after that.  The ten-week withdrawal period  begins on Sept. 15.   Make sure you know where you are with your credits and with any oversubscription.  Check your credit analysis, check your major certification form.  NOW is the time to identify and take care of any  problems.  You do not want to jeopardize your graduation because you are short of credits/major requirements. 

The Watson, Fulbright, Rhodes and several other scholarships/fellowships for next year have early fall deadlines.  Check out Scholarships/Fellowships, if interested, and talk with the campus liaison.  Speaking of life post-Wes, it is never too late to get into the WCC to explore your options—job? starting your own non-profit/for profit? grad school? professional school? internship? travel?  In the U.S.?  Abroad?   The possibilities are endless, which also can be overwhelming if you’re not sure what you want to do.  Contact Persephone Hall ( or any other WCC staff member to set up a time to meet to start sorting things out or just wander into the WCC resource library. 

The class blog will be up and running as of Monday.  Keep an  eye out for Celebrating Students columns this week (and write about your great summer experience!!) as well as for info about the Senior Welcome Back event.

I hope you had a great summer, and are looking forward to a great senior year.  Make it count!   And don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns.  Best, Dean Brown