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A celebration of Meliora

October 6, 2018
shadow of meliora letters with rush rhees library tower in the background

University alumni, community members, and friends celebrate the annual Meliora Weekend traditions of reunions, thought-provoking conversations, performances, and family fun.

Headlining performers include Soledad O’Brien, award-winning journalist, speaker, and author; Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ron Chernow;  innovative multi-genre musical group Pink Martini; political commentator and former Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele; and  Nasim Pedrad, former Saturday Night Live comedian and actress from New Girl and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

From left, Meghan Daly Lippman, Douglas Stiller, and Jennifer Carpenter Siedman—all members of the Class of 1988—show their Rochester spirit at the Meliora Village. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

Soledad O'Brien speaks at podium

In her keynote address, Soledad O’Brien talks about the importance of storytelling—and of diversity of stories and storytellers.”We have an obligation to hear people’s stories and maybe even more importantly to share our own stories. I don’t know if we can move forward as a community if we don’t do that,” she told a packed Palestra. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

Ron Chernow and Joanna Scott sit in chairs on a stage

Pulitzer­ Prize–winning writer Ron Chernow talks with Joanna Scott, the Roswell Smith Burrows Professor of English following his lecture, which focused on his critically acclaimed biography Grant. “I have used my books, not necessarily to write about a person, but as prisms to view a period,” he says. Chernow, who also wrote the biography of Alexander Hamilton that inspired the Broadway musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda, notes that since the musical, “I’m known as the hip-hop historian.” (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

Michael Steele stops by the voter registration table after his talk in Strong Auditorium to talk with, from right, Prashanta Augustine ’19, Merve Gulbay ’20, and Hager Elkhidir ’21. Steele, an MSNBC political analyst and former Republican National Committee chairman and lieutenant governor of Maryland, urged people in the audience to vote, elevate good candidates, and stay engaged after the elections. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

Gretchen Birbeck stands at podium

Gretchen Birbeck, the Edward A. and Alma Vollertsen Rykenboer Professor in Neurology, delivers a talk on her work researching neurologic disorders in sub-Saharan Africa. “The shrinking global condition of our fellow humans is more relevant now than ever,” Birbeck tells the audience at the School of Medicine and Dentistry’s “MEDTalks” event. “Research conducted off the beaten path could ultimately inform and help all of us.” (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

two students laugh while playing a carnival game

Tiwalade Dairo ’19, right, tests her might on the “High Striker” game at the Meliora Village—with a little encouragement from Victoria Alleluia Shenge ’19. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

woman sings on stage surrounded by musicians

Vocalist China Forbes with Pink Martini brought their unique blend of classical, jazz, and pop to Kodak Hall at the Eastman Theatre during one of the weekend’s headlining performances. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

group of alumni hold medals

Members of the Class of 1968 pose for a class photo after the medallion ceremony to mark their 50th reunion. (University of Rochester photo / Deron Berkhof)

 

Comedian and actress Nasim Pedrad, best known for her work on Saturday Night Live, entertains the audience in the Palestra: “On my way over here I heard a professor refer to freshmen as first-years and I thought to myself, ‘Am I at Hogwarts?’ I half expected to see kids walking with broomsticks … and then I did! Because you guys have a Quidditch team!” (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

two students juggle fire

Bryan Brown ’20 and  Aaron Goldin ’20 entertain the Meliora Weekend crowd during the Strong Jugglers’ ninth annual Fire Show. (University of Rochester photo / Zack Shepard)

 

 

woman gives presentation in front of a screen

Vankee Lin, an associate professor of nursing, discusses her work on understanding the neural mechanisms of cognitive aging and aging-related neurodegenerative diseases during the School of Nursing’s “SONTalks.” (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

group of singers perform on stage

Jamal Moore ’12E, center, and other YellowJackets alumni join the group for a performance at the A Cappella Jam. (University of Rochester photo / Zack Shepard)

 

 

several panelists sitting on a stage

Arthur Miller ’56, ’08 (Hon.), left, leads a discussion on the ethical, economic, and personal impact of data, privacy, and technology. Panelists, from left, include Mark Zaid ’89, founding and managing partner, Mark S. Zaid PC; Bruce Schneier ’84, a special advisor to IBM Security; Cheryl Howard ’83, senior data scientist at IBM; Randall Curren, a professor and chair of the Department of Philosophy; Thomas Barnett, chief information officer at the University of Rochester Medical Center; and Emily Trapani ’14, a professional staff member with the House Committee on Homeland Security. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

Yellowjackets wide receiver Duncan Stewart ’22 (80) celebrates his touchdown with teammates Sam Vercillo ’20 (59), Matt Capovani ’19 (65), and Justin Daul ’21 (85) during their game against St. Lawrence University. The Saints prevailed 38–24. (University of Rochester photo / Adrian Kraus)

 

 

three women flamenco dancing

Rebeca Tomas ’98 and A Palo Seco Flamenco Company were center stage in the Spurrier Hall dance studio. From right, Tomas is pictured with Laura Peralta and Elisabet Torras. (University of Rochester photo / Zack Shepard)

 

 

The combined Eastman School of Music/University of Rochester Women’s Chorus and University Concert Choir perform at the “Rochester Sings!” event. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

 

 

Kris Schell ’83, right, and Dana Bradley ’83, cheer on their daughter Saralinda Schell ’19 as she races for the Yellowjackets during the Head of the Genesee Regatta. Rochester earned multiple medals at the event(University of Rochester photo / Adrian Kraus)

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