Spring 2018 Arts & Events Calendars Now Available

Copies of the Brenau Arts & Events Calendar for January – May 2018 are now available at Walters House, 305 Boulevard, on the Gainesville campus. To request copies for your department or building please contact Alison Reeger Cook at areeger-cook@brenau.edu or 770-534-6160.

Submit Event Information for January – July 2018 Arts & Events Calendar

If your department has public events during the January – July 2018  semester be sure to submit your event information to the Brenau University Calendar of Arts & Events. Any events that will be open to the public and occur on the Brenau campus should be submitted.

Submit items at  https://www.brenau.edu/calendar/arts-cal-submission.

To meet our printing and publication deadlines, complete your submissions by Friday, Nov. 10, 2017. If you need a little more time, please contact Alison Reeger Cook at areeger-cook@brenau.edu.

Grrrl PowHER Hour Speaker Invites Students to ‘Step into Somebody Else’s Story’

Rachel McGowan, program director with I AM THAT GIRL, speaks during GRRRL PowHER Hour, an informal Women's College Convocation. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Brenau University students heard powerful stories during the fourth annual Grrrl PowHER Hour Thursday, Oct. 26, in Pearce Auditorium. Keynote speaker Rachel McGowan, program director of I AM THAT GIRL in Santa Monica, California, challenged the Women’s College students to think about themselves in an open, new way and to be authentic to themselves.

“I think being authentic means to really sit with yourself and allow yourself to be all that you are,” said McGowan to the packed auditorium of Brenau students, faculty and staff. “All of the good things you’ve done and all of the mistakes as well. I believe all those things can co-exist; I can be both a masterpiece and a work in progress. We are not ‘human doings,’ we are human beings.”

The theme of this year’s PowHER Hour was empathy, which McGowan defined as “choosing to step into somebody else’s story in order to experience it.” She described empathy as a superpower, a tool to connect with others, and the key to overcoming division and isolation. McGowan also encouraged the students to be in tune to one’s own sensitivity and to pick up on injustice and the social “toxins” of the world.

To read the full story, go to https://www.brenau.edu/inmotion/grrrl-powher-hour-step-into-somebody-elses-story.

Volunteers Needed for Brenau LitFest Oct. 14

The Brenau LitFest committee is looking for volunteers to help as greeters, workshop timekeepers and theater ushers for Saturday, Oct. 14. There are three four-hour shifts between 8:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.  to choose from.  We are also looking for performance artists and people who would like to dress-up as literary-themed characters to interact with guests around the venue.

If interested, you may fill in your name, email and phone number for a time slot on the Google Doc at  https://docs.google.com/a/brenau.edu/spreadsheets/d/1bzm4EcQeaDzKoknDP7J1o4DBbP9bV6U5RqZbcTe1hDg/edit?usp=sharing.

For more information about volunteering contact Danielle Miller at ddifede@brenau.edu. If you are interested in being a performance artist at LitFest, contact Lainey Kennedy at lwelsch1@brenau.edu.

One-year Student Visa Turns into Citizenship for Brenau Alumna

Maria Cecilia “Cessy” Ghilardotti, BU ’07

Maria Cecilia “Cessy” Ghilardotti, BU ’07, a native of of Justiniano Posse, Córdoba, Argentina, initially came to the United States for one year only as a Rotary International Scholar to study at Brenau. She liked it so much that she decided to stay.

On Tuesday, Aug. 15, Ghilardotti was sworn in as a full-fledged U.S. citizen.

“I could not be happier to finally call this country my own, and I am very grateful to the Brenau family for setting the stage,” said Ghilardotti. “Brenau was a ‘sine qua non’ in my quest to achieve what many deemed impossible at the time, paving the way to what other immigrants before me have sought: liberty in the land of the free and home of the brave.”


Fall 2017 Arts & Events Calendars Now Available

Copies of the Brenau Arts & Events calendar for August – December 2017  are now available at the Walters House, 305 Boulevard, on the Gainesville campus. To request copies for your department or building please contact Alison Reeger Cook at areeger-cook@brenau.edu or (770) 534-6160.

StaffChat: Sue Johnston, Student Services Office Manager

Sue Johnston chats with History/Political Science major Kyle Leineweber in her office.

Sue Johnston chats with History/Political Science major Kyle Leineweber in her office.

Sue Johnston moved up from switchboard operator to Student Services office manager on Monday, Jan. 30, and she couldn’t be more thrilled. However, the progression is only natural. Dubbed the Student Services “mom” since she began at Brenau more than two years ago, Johnston guides and organizes the student workers who come through the office. From day one, Johnston has shown her nurturing and caring spirit to every student she meets.

“The first day I was here was also the first day of fall semester, 2014,” she said. “We had a new student who was very, very sad. I asked her what was wrong, and she said, ‘everything.’ So we learned together how to get her situated, and not only did she end up staying, but she is going to be graduating with honors after only three years.”

She grew up in Des Moines, Iowa, where at Roosevelt High School she met a guy named David, who has now been her husband for 42 years. They also attended Iowa State University together. Sue studied journalism and mass communications. She subsequently transferred to Reinhardt University, where she graduated with a degree in communications. She went on to work as district training manager for Waldenbooks and Borders, and when she wanted to dedicate more time to caring for her family, she came to Brenau part-time to help Valerie Simmons-Walston while Jessica Bowling was on maternity leave.

Sue Johnston“I was just going to help out for a few hours a week. I came to work here two and a half years ago, and I was full-time permanent by the end of the first day,” Johnston said.

Johnston has lived in Minnesota, Texas, Iowa, Georgia and even England from 1999 to 2001 when her husband’s job took the family there. She is a self-proclaimed Anglophile, her favorite book being 84, Charing Cross Road, Helene Hanff’s tale about a bookstore in London. Despite having lived there for two years, she didn’t get to see everything Great Britain has to offer. “There’s something new going on every day there. It’s such a fabulous place.”
When Johnston first came to work at Brenau, she already had vast experience in that titled role of Brenau student mom: Her daughter, Annie, is a Brenau graduate and now works as an admissions specialist. Sue also has two other children, Brian and Hope, and four grandsons: Christopher, Matthew, Tyler and Flynn. She also adores her cat, Evie, adopted on New Year’s Eve.

Sue is not only unlimitedly talented in getting students the information they need, but she is also an incredible source of positivity and energy. With that energy, she is able to take a cloudy day and brighten it up. For that, I’m always thankful for Sue.
— Kyle Leineweber,
History/Political Science major

She is happy her new position will allow her to stay at the front, work with students every day and not squirrel her away into an office.

“I told [Amanda Lammers] when she offered me the job, I’ll do whatever you want, as long as I get to stay out there with the students,” she said. “I love my job so much.”

Sue Johnston

The Second Bud Revealed Book-signing, Presentation and Tasting Reception, Feb. 13

Event poster for Feb. 13
Reservations are required as seating is limited.

Author Martha Ezzard, an award-winning newspaper columnist, environmental lawyer and former Colorado state senator, discusses her book, The Second Bud, about how she and her physician husband John turned a north Georgia family farm into a successful winery. This presentation, tasting reception, and book-signing is part of Brenau’s Sense & Sustainability lecture series.

The event is Thursday, Feb. 13, from 6-8 p.m. at the Brenau University Downtown Center, 301 N. Main, Gainesville. While the event is free and open to the public, seating is limited and reservations are required. For more details contact Alison Reeger Cook at 770-534-6160 or make a reservation online at http://www.brenau.edu/sustainability/wine/.

Owned by John and Martha Ezzard and their partners John and Marilyn McMullan, Tiger Mountain Vineyards produces red and white wines from 100% Georgia-grown grapes in Rabun County. Ten acres of vines, planted in 1995 and 1996 on the Ezzards’ five-generation-old family farm, are nestled on the rolling sunny slopes of Tiger Mountain where they are individually tended and hand-picked. Their wines, mostly European vinifera, are found in every major city in Georgia and have won more than 195 awards. The vineyards and tasting room are open year round at 2592 Old Highway 441 South, Tiger, GA 30576.