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Parents Buzz: News for University of Rochester Parents


President Seligman Addresses University Community about Global Economic Crisis

President Joel Seligman stresses the University's commitment to providing an outstanding education for students, despite global economic challenges. Read more in Seligman's most recent progress report on the impact of the economy on the University and his remarks to the faculty at the start of the new semester.

Rochester Trustee Steven Chu Confirmed as Energy Secretary

Steven Chu '70, a Nobel physics laureate and a Rochester trustee, was named by President Barack Obama as the next energy secretary. Chu earned his bachelor's degrees in mathematics and in physics from Rochester. Read more from the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and Reuters.

Eastman Professor Earns Fifth Grammy Nomination

Paul O'Dette, professor of lute at the Eastman School, is nominated for his fifth Grammy Award. He is up against two Eastman alumni in the Best Opera Recording category: soprano Renee Fleming '83E (MM) and tenor Anthony Dean Griffey '01E (MM). The 51st Grammy Awards will be presented Sunday, Feb. 8, in Los Angeles. Read more ...

'Get on the Bus!' to the U.S. Presidential Inauguration

A group of 150 undergraduates from the College traveled to Washington, D.C., for the inauguration of President Barack Obama on Jan. 20. Their trip was covered by local media, including WHEC-TV and 13WHAM-TV. Read more ...

University Introduces Online Bill Payment

The Bursar's Office soon will offer students and their families the option to pay bills and view statements online. The new eBills will provide the same information as traditional paper statements but with the added convenience of online access and the option to print electronic copies. Read more ...

AlertUR Keeps Undergraduates Informed

The University launched an emergency alert communications system last year that uses e-mails, text messages, cell phones, and other devices to send simultaneous warnings to students during critical situations. Students are reminded to check their contact information by logging in at

Workshop on Entrepreneurship in Music School Curriculums

The Eastman School is exploring the place of entrepreneurship in higher education music school curriculums with a national workshop this month. Featured guests include Babson College's entrepreneurship professor Heidi Neck and composer-conductor Maria Schneider '85E (MM), a two-time Grammy winner. Read more ...

Alternative Spring Break

Student groups are in the process of planning several "alternative" spring break trips, which will engage students in community-based projects during spring break, March 7-15. For more information, e-mail the Rochester Center for Community Leadership or call them at (585) 275-4085.

Eastman Wind Ensemble, Canadian Brass Collaborate on CD

The Eastman Wind Ensemble and Canadian Brass, two of the most prestigious wind groups in North America, released Manhattan Music, their first-ever joint recording. Read more ...

Student Singers Create Scholarship

The Midnight Ramblers, a student a cappella group, created a $5,000 award for an incoming freshman who demonstrates an appreciation for musical innovation. Read more ...

2009 Summer Sessions

Rochester's summer sessions are open to anyone interested in learning something new or for undergraduates looking to take courses to get ahead in their degrees. Summer sessions run for 4, 6, and 12 weeks from May 18 through Aug. 7. Get details on summer courses at the College and at Eastman. Registration is also open for the Rochester on Campus summer program for high school students.

College Bowl Team to Appear on 'Millionaire'

Members of Rochester's College Bowl team, which won the National College Bowl last spring, will be featured as "experts" on the television quiz show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. Episodes will air in late January and early February. The team helped contestants win more than $200,000.

Eastman Guitarfest 2009

Beginning Feb. 10, performances and master classes by guitarists, such as the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, highlight this year's Guitarfest, a celebration of the growing role of the instrument in contemporary classical music. Read more ...

Urban Fellows Summer Internship Program

Students are invited to apply for the Urban Fellows Summer Internship. Participants work four days a week at selected human services agencies in the City of Rochester and learn about issues they encounter through their work. For more information, e-mail, call (585) 275-4085, or visit the Urban Fellows Web site.

Student Environmental Group Will Tackle Recyclemania

Grassroots, a student environmental organization, will compete in Recyclemania, a nationwide recycling competition. This is the third year the group is taking part, and they will be working closely with the University's new recycling coordinator in this year's competition.

Rochester Youth Year Fellows

Applications are now being accepted for 2009-10 Youth Year Fellows. For more information, e-mail, call (585) 275-4085, or visit

Flu Shots Still Available

It's not too late for students to get a flu shot. They can schedule an appointment at University Health Service by calling (585) 275-2662. The $25 charge is covered by the student Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance. For students who are covered by their own or their parents' insurance, the insurance company can be billed. If insurance does not cover the cost, the fee will be added to the student's tuition bill. Call (585) 273-5770 or e-mail for more information.

Hotel Offers Discount Rates for Parents

Special rates are available for parents of Rochester students at Staybridge Suites, a new hotel near the University. In 2009, studio rates are $119, one-bedroom suites cost $129, and two-bedroom suites are $159, for up to six nights. Call (585) 436-0346 and ask for the "University of Rochester rate."


'My Student Says Nobody Is Listening'

"College is different from high school, and even the most confident students are likely to experience some bumps during their college careers. As parents it can be difficult, even heartbreaking, to hear your student share his or her concerns and disappointments. It's natural to do what we did when our children were young but, rather than jumping in to solve your student's problems for them, consider ways to help them solve their problems." Read more...
Resources for students:
The College Center for Academic Support (CCAS)

Eastman's Office of Academic Affairs


Why I Teach

"What I am unable to describe about my approach to teaching, of course, is my interaction with students on a daily, personal level. What appeals to me enormously in the kind of teaching I do is the freedom I have to adapt to individuals and their different talents and needs. I am extremely proud of the students who have come to me without the slightest idea of how to put together a paragraph, and who left confident both in their newfound skills and in their capacities for continually improving them." —Thomas DiPiero, professor of French and cultural studies and senior associate dean for humanities, and a past recipient of a Goergen Award for Distinguished Achievement and Artistry in Undergraduate Teaching. Read more...


Dining Services Works with Special Dietary Needs

If a student has a special dietary requirements, he or she can contact Dining Services at (585) 275-0032 or visit the dining Web site for more information.

Foods Containing Peanut Butter Removed From Vending Outlets

The University has taken proactive steps to remove items containing peanut butter from vending machines on all campuses in light of a recent Food and Drug Administration recall related to a salmonella outbreak in the United States and Canada. All University food preparation and dining locations also have stopped serving items that are affected by the recall. Direct any food safety questions to Peter Castronovo at (585) 275-8405 or

Have You Met the ‘Food Dudes’?

A group of College undergraduates have been spending a lot of time in Dining Services as members of a new group called the Food Dudes that's teaming up with another group called the Green Team to draw attention to sustainable dining practice. Read more...


Meet a Librarian

Is your child asking you for advice about a research paper? Staff librarians at Rochester are ready to help students find resources for their papers and research projects. For more information, visit the libraries Web site.


'Brain Smarter Than We Are'

Scientific American (Dec. 30)

A study by brain and cognitive sciences professor Alex Pouget demonstrates that maybe our brains do make the best possible decisions but only if it's done unconsciously.


Rochester Experts Comment on Inauguration

Curt Smith, senior lecturer of English and former speechwriter to President George H. W. Bush, and Valeria Sinclair-Chapman, assistant professor of political science, gave expert commentary on President Barack Obama's inaugural speech.



photo of student
Rochester's Class of 2012 set a new record for the number of students who were accepted for admission and chose to enroll. Meet Sean Rodrigues and seven other first-year students who are bringing their energy and ideas to the University.


Parents: You’re Always Welcome

Parents of current College and Eastman students, as members of the University community, are regularly invited to regional alumni programs. Visit the regional calendar for details and registration information.

Regional Events

San Francisco: An Evening with Rob Clark, dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. 6 to 9 p.m., Jan. 26.

New York City: Rochester Night at NASDAQ. 6 p.m., Jan. 29.

Washington, D.C./Baltimore: Faculty Book Reading and Signing. Fallen Giants: A History of Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes. 6 p.m., Feb. 4

Denver: Speed Networking Night. 6:30 p.m., Feb. 4.

Boston: Faculty Book Reading and Signing. Fallen Giants: A History of Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes. 6 p.m., Feb. 17.

Local Events

Major Bankruptcies and Their Impact on the Economy. 5 p.m., Feb. 2.

See more on the University Events Calendar.


Miró Quartet. 3 p.m., Feb. 1.
The Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. 3 p.m., Feb. 15

More events listed on Eastman's concert calendar.


Women's Hoops Ranked No. 1

The women's basketball team, which was 14-0 heading into this weekend, is ranked No. 1 by, a national small college basketball Web site. It's the second time in school history that the women's team has been ranked number one. Read more ...

Yellowjackets at Home

Men's Basketball: Jan. 25, noon, University of Chicago; Feb. 6, 8 p.m., Emory University; Feb. 8, noon, Case Western Reserve.

Women's Basketball: Jan. 25, 2 p.m., University of Chicago; Feb. 6, 6 p.m., Emory University; Feb. 8, 2 p.m., Case Western Reserve.

Squash: Feb. 6, 7 p.m., Trinity (CT)

Yellowjackets Away

Men's Basketball: Jan. 30, 8 p.m., Case Western Reserve; Feb. 1, noon, Emory University.

Women's Basketball: Jan. 30, 6 p.m., Case Western Reserve; Feb. 1, 2 p.m., Emory University.

Squash: Jan. 29, 6 p.m., Hobart; Jan. 30, 7 p.m., Franklin & Marshall; Jan. 31, noon, Navy; Feb. 1, 12:30 p.m., Princeton.

Swimming and Diving: Jan. 24, 1 p.m., Ithaca; Feb. 11-14, UAA Championships, Chicago.

For a full schedule:

What's It Like?

See what it's like today in Rochester. Check out the River Campus Web cams. Or, view today's forecast.

Maps & More

View maps of the University and take a virtual tour.

Planning a visit? There's a lot to do and see in Rochester.

Helpful Links

Academic Calendars

Arts, Sciences, and Engineering


Bursar/Online Payment

Concert Information

Dining Services

Eastman School of Music

Emergency Resources


Financial Aid

Parent Relations


University Health Service

University News

Parents Buzz is produced by University Communications, Parent Relations, and the Parents Program. It is e-mailed monthly to parents of undergraduates in the College and at the Eastman School of Music. View issues online at Direct feedback and questions to