For decades, alumni have shared with college officials their desire to see a retirement community developed on or near the Berry campus. That dream is now one step closer to reality following the recent announcement that a site has been selected for a planned Continuing Care Retirement Community to open in 2019.
The facility, discussed by President Steve Briggs in the summer issue of Berry magazine, will be built on undeveloped college land overlooking a pristine 88-acre lake that up until 15 years ago served as a limestone quarry. The site offers commanding views of Lavender Mountain and is in close proximity to Berry’s main campus and Rome’s highly regarded medical centers.
The community will feature 150 apartment homes and cottages and offer a full complement of healthcare and supportive services and amenities. It also will provide work and learning opportunities for a significant number of Berry students serving in a variety of roles.
“The relationship between the college and CCRC is wonderfully complementary, as it will allow different generations to enjoy and serve one another,” said President Briggs. “And both the retirement community and Berry will be richer for it.”
Hundreds have shown interest in the project by requesting information through the Retire at Berry website. Many have attended meetings for alumni and friends wishing to participate in the project’s priority placement program. Visit www.retireatberry.com to secure placement on the list (a minimal refundable deposit is required).
Other developments this fall include selection of major design and contracting firms and the naming of an independent seven-member board of directors for the facility, which will operate as a financially self-sustaining nonprofit. It is expected that both the community and the lake will be named early next year.
The new year will bring a new initiative within the Berry College Integrity in Leadership Center – the Cecil B. “Buster” Wright III Integrity in Leadership Lecture Series. The series honors the role that Wright, a 1973 alumnus who now serves as vice chair of the Berry College Board of Trustees, has played as a force behind the establishment of the leadership center and its Carper mentoring program, his generosity toward Berry, and his personal character.
The Feb. 11 inaugural presentation will feature remarks by Barbara Kellerman, the James MacGregor Burns Lecturer in Public Leadership at Harvard University. Her public lecture is scheduled for 8 p.m. in the Berry College Chapel. Admission is free. Before speaking, Kellerman will dine with students and special guests. While on campus, she also will conduct a half day of classroom visits.
“It is a wonderful privilege to have Dr. Kellerman here for the inauguration of the Cecil B. Wright III Integrity in Leadership Lecture Series,” said President Steve Briggs. “Buster Wright admires Dr. Kellerman’s writings and uses them in his mentoring work with Berry students, so it is a fitting tribute to his convictions and tenacity that she should deliver the lecture as his vision becomes a reality.”
The Integrity in Leadership Center is a priority of Berry’s LifeReady Campaign.
Berry football players celebrate the first of seven consecutive victories. Photo courtesy of Kevin Eckleberry of the LaGrange Daily News
An NCAA Division III regional appearance in women’s volleyball and Berry’s best football season to date highlighted a strong fall semester for the college’s intercollegiate athletics program. Berry is currently second overall (first in the men’s standings) in the race for the Southern Athletic Association’s Presidents’ Trophy, recognizing excellence across all sports.
The women’s volleyball team enjoyed a banner season under eighth-year coach Mika Robinson, posting a 25-8 overall record and hosting an NCAA regional for the first time in program history. The Vikings advanced to the second round before losing in five sets to SAA rival Hendrix, an eventual national semifinalist. Robinson’s club was led by junior Jessica Gum and senior Katie O’Rourke, both honorable-mention All-America selections by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.
The football team also challenged for an NCAA playoff berth, battling into the final week of the regular season before falling just short of the automatic bid awarded to the SAA champion. Still, the Vikings finished with a 7-3 overall record that included a 4-1 mark at Valhalla, Berry’s new on-campus stadium for football, lacrosse, and track and field.
Other fall highlights included second-place conference finishes in men’s and women’s cross country and winning seasons in men’s and women’s soccer. Two members of the women’s soccer team, junior Maggie Midkiff and senior Becca Proschansky, were named Capital One Academic All-Americans by the College Sports Information Directors of America for their combined achievements on the playing field and in the classroom.
Visit www.berryvikings.com for complete coverage of Berry athletics.
Civic engineering – the process of encouraging people to engage themselves in their communities – was the topic Nov. 12 as Berry’s Conson Wilson Lecture Series welcomed Robbie Bach, the man responsible for leading the creation and development of the highly successful Xbox video game platform. The former Microsoft executive spoke at the request of Berry Trustee Barry Griswell (71C), his colleague on the National Board of Governors of the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, which Bach serves as chair. Bach also has strong ties to another Berry trustee, Roxanne Spillett, former president and CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
In his remarks, Bach noted that the strategy of devising a purpose, principles and priorities that proved so successful in developing the Xbox apply to civic engineering as well. He also told the audience of students, faculty and community members that faith, perseverance and serendipity are three things that have changed his life. He walked away impressed by the beauty of Berry’s campus and the emphasis on student work.
Media coverage: Xbox creator speaks at Berry
Dr. Bruce Conn in Washington, D.C., during his Jefferson Science Fellowship.
Gund Professor of Biology Bruce Conn is one of a select group of six former Jefferson Science Fellows cited by the National Research Council in the new book, Diplomacy for the 21st Century, for continuing engagement in the implementation of U.S. foreign policy. The publication commended his service as an adviser to the U.S. State Department’s Office of International Health and Biodefense during the 2013 Chikungunya fever incursion into the Western Hemisphere, the 2014 Ebola outbreak, and other humanitarian actions to combat neglected tropical diseases.
The longtime Berry faculty member and former dean of the School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences spent a year in Washington, D.C., following his 2010 selection as a Jefferson Science Fellow. His current duties include membership on the lead committee for Berry’s One Health Center.
By Maxine Donnelly, senior student writer in philanthropic communications
Berry student Corley Peth working with children at the South Rome Early Learning Center.
Teachers, parents and children are praising the efforts of Berry students working in the South Rome Early Learning Center, a strategic partnership between Berry, Rome City Schools and the South Rome Redevelopment Corporation. Housed in the new Anna K. Davie Elementary School, the center welcomed its first class of 20 three-year-olds in July, the same month it was fully licensed by Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning. The center is meant to improve educational opportunities for the children while also providing valuable experience for Berry students. The current staff includes two graduate students in Berry’s Charter School of Education and Human Sciences, one representative of the Bonner Scholars Program and four student workers serving alongside the center director, lead teacher, assistant teacher and office manager/community liaison.
“I like it because it is not just a daycare,” parent Tiara Barrett told the Rome News-Tribune. “They are really learning things and every day [my daughter] comes to me and tells me what they do.”
In this season of giving, it’s only fitting that we take a moment to share our gratitude with the generous alumni and friends whose gifts supply the puzzle pieces that help Berry students see their big picture. If you made a gift of any size to Berry in 2014-15, your name can be found on the online Honor Roll of Donors.
This special website also features a short video message from students Christian Akers, Stephen Stamps, Ree Palmer and Alondra Guzman. Their experiences illustrate the true impact of your generosity. We join them in saying thanks for your support!
Berry’s most famous part-time residents have returned to their perch high atop a pine tree not far from the college entrance, signaling the beginning of another viewing season for fans of the Berry College Eagle Cam. Already, two Atlanta network affiliates have featured Gena Flanigan’s photo of a “kiss” between the two birds (at left), and attention is sure to build in anticipation of potential eggs (expected soon after Christmas).
Eagle Cam once again features three different camera positions, two of which show the nest’s interior. All three cameras have been updated to provide even crisper images, and both interior views feature sound. Click here for updates as the nesting season progresses or join the more than 104,000 others who have “liked” the Berry College Eagles on Facebook. Teachers wishing to incorporate the eagles into their classroom discussions can download sample lesson plans developed by Berry faculty and students.
In the October issue of the Alumni Accent, we asked you to pick the ideal setting for your Berry ghost story. The top choice, no doubt inspired by the Green Lady, was Stretch Road (40%). Second was Possum Trot Church (23%), followed by the Hoge Building (17%), Oak Hill (11%), Ford Dining Hall (6%) and Frost Chapel (3%).
This month, we continue the holiday theme by asking you to choose the perfect Berry Christmas gift. Scroll to the blog footer to make your selection. If you’re lucky, St. Nick might take note of your Berry wish.
If you still have shopping left to do (and let’s face it, we all do), be sure to check out the Oak Hill Gift Shop. They’ve got a little something for everyone! Orders must be placed by Dec. 18 to ship before the new year.
If you’re in easy driving distance, you also might consider cheese from The Berry Farms Jersey Milk student enterprise. Call 706-378-2930 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to place an order for campus pickup Dec. 16-17. Six delicious flavors are available.