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Parents Buzz: News for University of Rochester Parents
September 2013
President Delivers State of the University Address
President Joel Seligman described the state of the University as “strong” during his annual report to the Faculty Senate on Sept. 17. “Overarching much of what occurs throughout our University is a common ideal. I call it the Rochester ideal—that great research is inextricably linked to great teaching and community service,” Seligman said before outlining the University’s vision and strategic priorities for the next five years. Read the full speech and view the presentation.

University to Introduce Sworn Peace Officers
This October, the University will have a mixed force of sworn and non-sworn officers. Sworn peace officers will have enhanced abilities and tools, adding to the safety, enforcement, and investigative services at the University. Additionally, to more accurately reflect the purpose and services of the department, the University’s Department of Security Services has changed its name to the Department of Public Safety. Read more...
Meliora Weekend Highlights
Meliora Weekend, Oct. 10–13, is a Rochester tradition that welcomes alumni, parents, and friends to campus for dozens of programs, lectures, panels, performances, and exhibits. Registration closes Tuesday, Oct. 1, at noon EDT. Highlights include a keynote address by Robert Gates, former U.S. secretary of defense, a performance by comedian Demetri Martin, and a combined Presidential Symposium-Miller’s Court program led by retired Congressman Barney Frank and Arthur Miller ’56, ’08 (Honorary). New this year are MEL Talks—dynamic storytelling, performance, and presentations by Rochester alumni, faculty, and students. A full list of events is available on the Meliora Weekend website.
Eastman Family Weekend
Eastman Family Weekend, Oct. 18–20, will feature concerts, tours, student recitals, and other programs. The weekend is designed to bring the Eastman School community together, provide families opportunities to spend time with each other, and allow time to meet faculty and staff. Read more...
Freshmen Connect with Community on Wilson Day
group of female students carrying a tarp filled with leaves
This fall marked the 25th anniversary of Wilson Day, a day of service for freshmen from the River Campus. On Aug. 29, more than 1,300 students explored the Rochester community as they volunteered at 92 sites, including several of Rochester’s nonprofit organizations. Wilson Day aims to create connections among new students while introducing them to the Rochester community and the volunteer opportunities the city has to offer. Eastman School’s George Eastman Day of Service was held Aug. 30.
Looking Back at Move-in Day 2013
Members of the Class of 2017—and all their stuff—arrived on the River Campus and at the Eastman School during the week of Aug. 26. Relive move-in day through photos, video, and social media coverage.
Wireless Coverage Expanded
University IT recently expanded wireless coverage on the River Campus to seven houses on the Fraternity Quad: Alpha Delta Phi, Delta Kappa Epsilon, Psi Upsilon, Sigma Alpha Mu, Sigma Chi, and Theta Chi. Wireless service was also included in the construction of Ronald Rettner Hall for Media Arts and Innovation, which is scheduled to open this semester.
Bus Transportation Available
My Bus Home will arrange one-way and round-trip transportation for the 2013–14 academic breaks. Private, fully insured motor coaches with restrooms, DVD player, and Wi-Fi will pick up students on the River Campus and at the Eastman School. Buses go to and from central locations in Easton, Pa.; Bridgewater, N.J.; New York City (Penn Station); and Ludlow and Newton, Mass.
    Trailways bus service also offers weekly bus service from the University to Syracuse, Binghamton, Albany, Utica, New York City, and Boston.
Rochester Students Win National Geothermal Competition
A team of Rochester students placed first in the National Geothermal Student Competition, an annual intercollegiate contest sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy that promotes innovation in geothermal energy development and technology as a clean energy solution. The team, made up of doctoral geology students David Brink-Roby and Talor Walsh and undergraduates Kidus Alemayehu ’15 and Leah Sabbeth ’13, was one of four semifinalist groups to advance to the final round of the competition. Read more...
University on the Fringe
The University is a sponsor of the 2013 First Niagara Rochester Fringe Festival, which starts Thursday, Sept. 19, and continues through Sept. 28. In addition to headliner acts and local performers, 30 acts including students, faculty, and staff from Arts, Sciences & Engineering, the Medical Center, and the Eastman School will perform at venues throughout the city of Rochester. The Eastman School is hosting 14 shows featuring 12 different acts. In the newsLocal Colleges and Universities Well Represented at This Year’s Rochester Fringe Festival.
Financial Aid Communications
The Financial Aid Office communicates directly with students via email. If students have any outstanding documents missing from this year’s financial aid application, they need to submit the materials to the Financial Aid Office as soon as possible. During September, the office will send emails to those students who have outstanding application materials. Parents are asked to touch base with their students regarding the requirements. If the requirements are not completed by Oct. 11, it may impact your bill with the University.

President Obama Lunches with Students, Alumni to Discuss College Affordability   
president obama eating lunch with students and families
Four University students and recent graduates found themselves as the exclusive lunch guests of President Barack Obama on Aug. 22 when the president made a stop at Magnolia’s Deli and Cafe in Rochester as part of his college affordability tour. At Magnolia's, he lunched with Douglas Brady ’15, Evalyn Gleason ’13, Wesline Manuelpillai ’16, and Brandon McDonald ’13—as well as some of their family members—for a conversation on their experience with college costs and loans and ideas on improving college affordability in the United States. Read more...

Career Center Offers Informational, Networking Events
The Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center challenges students to articulate, refine, and pursue their goals. Counselors urge students to state goals in terms of the “3 F’s”: Which fields do you see yourself working in? What specific job functions do you see yourself doing? And what firms might you see yourself working for? Students are encouraged to attend a one-hour seminar; stop by the Career and Internship Fair on Oct. 9; and attend the Meliora Weekend Student Alumni Networking Night on Oct. 11. Students may also make appointments for coaching and counseling services at the center.
Deadlines Approaching for Several Fellowships
The Fellowships Office advises undergraduates on applications for select merit-based national awards. Upcoming deadlines include the Public Policy and International Affairs Fellowship Program, the Critical Language Scholarship Program, the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, and the Soros Fellowships for New Americans. Information about these and other fellowship opportunities is available on the Fellowships Office website.

Rochester Center for Community Leadership Has Moved
The Rochester Center for Community Leadership has a new space in 107 Lattimore Hall and can be reached at (585) 276-6860. Through sustainable University and community partnerships, the center develops initiatives that cultivate skills, experiences, and resources necessary for innovative solutions to complex societal issues.
Student Advantage Card Can Help Students Save
Looking for discounts on Amtrak and Greyhound for your student’s travel plans? The University partners with Student Advantage to offer students a card that includes discounts to many national retailers. Purchase a card online and view the list of existing discounts associated with the program. A one-year card is $20, and a four-year card is $45.
Compass to Personal Success Accepting Applications
students talking with dean burgett
Students are invited to apply to Compass to Personal Success, a three-year leadership development program for undergraduates coordinated by the Rochester Center for Community Leadership. The program emphasizes experiential learning and personal development to enhance leadership skills. Students who meet the qualifications may email their application by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24. Learn more on the program’s website or email Molly Sarubbi at
New Arts, Sciences & Engineering Alumni Website Launches
A new alumni website for Arts, Sciences & Engineering has just launched. Did you know that alumni have access to monthly events and webinars featuring renowned faculty, career networking opportunities, and premium library databases? Visit the new site for more information about alumni benefits, events, and news.
Test-flexible Policy Enters Second Year
Last year, the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid formally adopted a “test-flexible” policy to provide applicants to the College greater freedom in how they wish to present themselves to the admission committee. Applicants can now submit results from any national or international test along with their secondary school records of courses and grades. While SAT reasoning and ACT exams are among the scores that are accepted, applicants are no longer required to submit either and may choose to submit three or more SAT subject tests, Advanced Placement exams, predicted International Baccalaureate results, or others if they feel those scores are a better reflection of their testing ability.
Send Your Student a Birthday Cake
Sigma Delta Tau will deliver a message from home and a Wegmans birthday cake on the River Campus or at the Eastman School for your son’s or daughter’s birthday. Email Emily Trapani and Kate Neimeyer at for an order form.

‘I Hope Your Semester Is Off to a Good Start’
What steps can students take at the start of the semester to assure that they are well prepared for the challenges to come? Marcy Kraus, dean of freshmen and director of the College Center for Advising Services, offers some tips.

Resources for students:

Especially for Students: ’UR Healthy‘
The UHS Health Promotion Office, Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, and several cosponsors are offering three weeks of programming devoted to five dimensions of health—mental, physical, spiritual, sexual, and social well-being. Check the “UR Healthy” events calendar to find a variety of programs, events, and activities focused on health and wellness. 
Flu Vaccine Clinics
University Health Service is holding its first Flu Vaccine Clinic from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 30, in Wilson Commons on the River Campus. See a list of upcoming clinics. Students are asked to bring their insurance card to the clinic. The charge for the flu shot will be billed to the student’s insurance plan. If the cost is not covered, the charge will be sent to the student’s tuition billing statement. Students can schedule an appointment to receive their shot at UHS, if they prefer.
Help Available When Your Student Is Sick
Consider University Health Service your son or daughter’s doctor’s office on campus. A staff of physicians, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses provide care to students. Every student is assigned a primary care provider at UHS and encouraged to schedule appointments with their provider whenever possible. Click here to learn more.
Student Health 101
All students receive a copy of Student Health 101 every month from the UHS Health Promotion Office. The e-magazine provides health information to help your student succeed at the University. As a companion to the student edition, a parent version is also available. 

About Parents Buzz

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

student paints a piano with bright colors

Organized by Marissa Balonon-Rosen, a senior pursuing degrees at the Eastman School and in the College, “Pianos for Peace” is a twofold project that brings music and art to neighborhoods, employing pianos as a catalyst for discussion and community building. The donated upright and baby grand pianos were painted with peace themes by volunteers and community organizations and placed in several locations throughout the city, giving anyone the opportunity to walk up to and play an instrument or hear someone else play.

The pianos were moved to the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence in Rochester, one of the project sponsors, at the end of August. The relocated instruments will create a “Piano Park for Peace,” with additional concerts and programs about nonviolence. At the end of September, the pianos will be donated to various youth and peace-promoting organizations.

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Pianos for Peace video
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
Los Angeles: “AIDS-free Future,” Sept. 22.

In Rochester


More events listed on Eastman’s concert calendar and the University’s arts and entertainment listing.

Yellowjackets at Home
Field Hockey: Sept. 21, noon, New Paltz; Sept. 27, 4 p.m., Vassar College; Sept. 28, 4 p.m., Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Oct. 6, SUNY Cortland; Oct. 11, 4 p.m., William Smith College.
Football: Sept. 28, noon, Springfield College; Oct. 12, 1 p.m., U.S. Merchant Marine Academy.
Rowing: Oct. 5, 8 a.m., Head of the Genesee; Oct. 12, 10 a.m., University of Rochester Alumni Challenge.
Men’s Soccer: Sept. 24, 7 p.m., St. John Fisher College; Sept. 28, 7 p.m., Lycoming College; Oct. 5, 5 p.m., New York University.
Women’s Soccer: Oct. 1, 7 p.m., Nazareth College; Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m., New York University.
Volleyball: Sept. 28, 11 a.m., Allegheny College, 1 p.m., Alfred University; Oct. 12, 10 a.m., Earlham College, 2 p.m., Hiram College.

Yellowjackets Away
Cross Country: Sept. 28, 11 a.m., Roberts Wesleyan College Harry Anderson Invitational; Oct. 5, 11 a.m., SUNY Geneseo Invitational.
Field Hockey: Oct. 1, 6 p.m., St. John Fisher College; Oct. 8, 6 p.m., Ithaca College; Oct. 15, 6 p.m., College at Brockport.
Football: Sept. 21, noon, Gallaudet University; Oct. 5, 1 p.m., St. Lawrence University.
Golf: Sept. 28–29, Liberty League Championships, Canton, N.Y.; Oct. 7–8, Oglethorpe University Invitational.
Rowing: Sept. 28, 9 a.m., Challenge on the Canal, Geneva, N.Y.; Oct. 19–20, Head of the Charles, Boston, Mass.; Oct. 26, 9 a.m., Head of the Fish, Saratoga, N.Y.
Men’s Soccer: Sept. 21, 7:30 p.m., Hillside Community Shield vs. Rochester Institute of Technology, Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester; Oct. 12, 3 p.m., Brandeis University.
Women’s Soccer: Sept. 21, 5 p.m., Hillside Community Shield vs. Rochester Institute of Technology, Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester; Oct. 24, 7 p.m., St. John Fisher College; Oct. 12, noon, Brandeis University.
Squash: Oct. 11–13, CSA Intercollegiate Doubles Championship, Philadelphia, Pa.
Men’s Tennis: Sept. 20–22, ITA Regional Championships, Ithaca, N.Y.; Sept. 26, 4 p.m., Roberts Wesleyan College.
Women’s Tennis: Sept. 28–30, ITA Regional Championships, Geneva, N.Y.; Oct. 11–13, NYS Championships, Ithaca, N.Y.
Volleyball: Sept. 20–21, Elizabethtown College Tournament; Oct. 1, 7 p.m., Rochester Institute of Technology; Oct. 5–6, UAA Round Robin No. 1, Cleveland, Ohio; Oct. 9, 7 p.m., Nazareth College.

For a full schedule:

What’s It Like?

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