Alumni News - April 2019

A Spring Break Spent with Intent...

Photo of two people in scrubs wearing face masks in an operating room

Another week of Career Connections has come to a close! Over spring break, CWRU students spent time shadowing alumni while pursuing potential career options. One student shadowed Michael Bokoch (CWR ‘03), assistant professor of clinical anesthesia for the University of California, San Francisco. Another student, considering a political science major, shadowed Claire Bartlett, the field director for U.S. Representative Barry Loudermilk in Atlanta, an opportunity arranged by former member of The Alumni Association Board Paul Marcela (LAW ‘81). The feedback from all participants has been overwhelmingly positive. We are especially grateful for alumni who are so willing to share their time and experience with the latest generation of CWRU students!

Career Connections is an opportunity provided through the Office of Post Graduate Planning and Experiential Education for first and second-year students to shadow alumni in an academic and location of interest. Each year, this popular program has over 100 students express interest for 50 available spots and was recognized by CWRU’s Office of Student Affairs with a Positive Impact Award in 2014-15.

Photo of  three people posed in front of U.S. Representative Barry Loudermilk wall at the U.S. House of Representatives

With support from The Alumni Association of CWRU, the last six years has seen over 300 students shadow zoologists, attorneys, judges, physicians, researchers, genetic counselors, consultants, investment bankers, accountants, entrepreneurs and nurses. From Florida to California to New York City, this opportunity promotes retention at CWRU and helps students envision their future and commit to academic success to achieve their goals.

Career Connections takes place during CWRU's spring break. If you are interested in hosting a student at your workplace, contact or Laura Papcum at the Office of Post Graduate Planning and Experiential Education.


Alumni and Students Sign Up For a Different Kind of Course at CWRU!

Photo of 2018 Alumni Hudson Relays team posed and smiling in front of Adelbert Hall

The Hudson Relays, CWRU’s longest “running” tradition, returns on the morning of Saturday, April 27. Current classes, graduate students and alumni face off in this longtime tradition featuring a 25-mile relay around campus, with each participant runs a half-mile section of the course. Sign up to participate or come down to campus to cheer on the runners.  

Let's run around campus together!

We Are Seeking Nominations!

2018 Homecoming Alumni Awards Winners holding their awards on stage

Who do you admire among our alumni? Help us recognize them by nominating candidates (including yourself) for a prestigious 2019 CWRU Alumni Association Award. Recipients will be honored at the 2019 Homecoming Luncheon on October 11.

The five award categories are: Distinguished Alumni (Lifetime Achievement); Professional Achievement (Mid-Career Achievement); Young Alumni Achievement (Recognizing alumni under 36 years old); Daniel T. Clancy Award (Outstanding service to CWRU alumni for at least 15 years); and Newton D. Baker Award (Recognizing outstanding acts of service performed by alumni, faculty, staff and members of the community).

Review award criteria and complete a user-friendly nomination form by May 31, 2019 >

Join us to celebrate all our alumni during Homecoming Weekend, October 10-13, 2019!

CWRU Alumni Around the World Connect with Current Students

Jarryn Ha (GRS '18, musicology), a CWRU alumnus who was born and raised in Seoul, Korea, was introduced to two current CWRU students who are spending a semester abroad in his hometown by the university’s Center for International Affairs. Before classes started, Ha was able to meet the students for adventures that included dinner at an Indian restaurant, a stop at Korea's largest bookstore, and a trip to Jongno-gu, the political and cultural hub of Seoul, which includes street markets and the Ministry of Unification headquarters.

Photo of three people, posed and smiling for the camera

CWRU’s Study Abroad-Alumni Connections program was created by the Center for International Affairs and The Alumni Association to bring current students and alumni together around the globe. To start the discussion, students and alumni are matched via email either before the student’s departure or during their international stay. Once introduced, students and alumni may consider meeting one-on-one for coffee, visiting a tourist hotspot or attending a cultural event. Depending on class size, a group dinner for students and local alumni may be arranged.

Matches are made for the duration of the study abroad program, typically one academic year or semester. Alumni who are interested in connecting with study abroad students can contact Chamois Williams, Associate Director of Alumni Outreach & Affinity Programs.

CWRU's International Focus

International Friendship Program Finishes Another Year of Fun

On April 6, participants in this year’s International Friendship Program (IFP) will close out the school year with lunch at Dave's Cosmic Subs, the newest eatery on campus. IFP matches international students with Case Western Reserve alumni, staff, faculty and friends. The program helps students make the transition to life in the US, it gives hosts the opportunity to learn about other nationalities and cultures, and it can serve as a springboard for friendships that often last beyond a student's stay at Case Western Reserve. If you are interested in participating in the IFP, please contact Liz Woyczynski or Diana Fox at

Learn more information about the International Friendship Program >

Holi Celebration is Happening at CWRU
Photo of people running through a cloud of colors during the Holi Festival of Colors at CWRU

Everyone is invited to join CWRU for a colorful dance party in celebration of Holi! Originating in Hindu legend, Holi traditionally commemorated the act of the dark blue god Krishna applying color to the face of his soul mate. Known as the festival of colors, Holi celebrations consist of throwing colored powder and water at others.

CWRU’s Holi celebration is open to the public and will feature lots of colored powder, Indian street food, games and traditions associated with Holi and Basant! (The colored powder is safe and non-toxic but may stain certain clothing so please plan accordingly.) This free celebration will take place on Freiberger Field from 1-4 p.m. on Saturday, April 6.

CWRU’s Holi event is sponsored by The Center for International Affairs, The Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Office of the Provost and First Year Experience. The celebration is made possible with the help of the Undergraduate Indian Students Association, SATRANG, iClub, and other student organizations.

Celebrating 30 Years of the CWRU-Uganda Partnership

A photo of participants in the CWRU-Uganda Research Collaboration in Uganda

On March 26, Makerere University in Uganda hosted Case Western Reserve University for a celebration of 30 years of research collaboration during the symposium "Building Bridges, Fighting Diseases - Past, Present and Future."

The Uganda-CWRU Research Collaboration began in 1986, after a presidential invitation was extended to Fredrick C. Robbins, the late CWRU professor and Nobel Laureate, to visit Uganda and assist with the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Case Western Reserve University President Barbara R. Snyder attended the event, receiving a plaque to mark the occasion from Makerere University Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe. President Snyder delivered remarks that called upon Makerere University professors, doctors and lecturers to nurture the next generation of researchers who will continue to manage diagnosis, improve treatments and develop vaccines.

Career Preparation Etiquette Dinner for International Students Hits the Spot!

CWRU international students learn about US formal dining etiquette during a dinner at Linsalata Alumni Center

Following graduation, many of Case Western Reserve University’s international students plan to work in the United States, and while they are well prepared to enter the workforce, navigating formal dinners for job interviews and business meetings can be challenging for those who come from other cultures. 

This year, the Center for International Affairs and CWRU’s International Club hosted their first ever Career Preparation Etiquette Dinner to help international students feel confident in these social situations. Catherine Holloway from Etiquette Consulting Services guided the students through a three-course meal explaining Western expectations of politeness, how to properly use all the utensils they will encounter while dining, and providing tips for starting conversations with a host or other guests.

Many of the students who attended the event said they came away feeling much more comfortable eating in a formal, American setting and that the information Holloway shared was interesting and helpful to them. 

The event was made possible with the help of generous sponsors from across campus including: The Alumni Association of CWRU, International Development Initiative, Jack, Joseph & Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Office of Residence Life, Office of Foreign Graduate Legal Studies, Post Graduate Planning & Experiential Education, School of Medicine Graduate Education, School of Dental Medicine, Weatherhead Student Experience and Weatherhead Career Management.

See the World with CWRU and Siegal Lifelong Learning

Photo of a traveler overlooking a lush green landscape

In February, alumni enjoyed an Amazon River Expedition with Darin Croft, PhD, a professor in the Department of Anatomy at CWRU. Croft is a paleomammalogist, studying the evolution of mammals over geologic time using living mammals and the fossil record. His focus is on the evolution of South American mammals, which has a rich fossil record and was geographically isolated for most of the past 66 million years. 

Discover alumni travel opportunities currently offered through Siegal Lifelong Learning >

MED Students Met Their MATCH in March

A couple holds children and their match letter during CWRU Match day 2019

On March 15, medical students across the country -– including those from Case Western Reserve School of Medicine and its Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine -– opened envelopes to discover where their journey will take them for the next three to seven years as resident physicians. At CWRU, friends and family joined students for this momentous moment.

According to the National Residency Matching Program, this year’s match is the largest in history, as 8,376 students applied for 35,185 program positions. This exciting day is not only a rite of passage for new physicians, but matches are watched closely as they can predict future workforce changes in the healthcare field. 

A few facts about this year’s students:

  • Top residency choices included: internal medicine, pediatrics, general surgery, emergency medicine, orthopedic surgery, radiology and obstetrics-gynecology. 
  • 35% of the class will go into primary care specialties. 
  • 49% of surgery matches are women. 
  • 20% of the graduates will continue serving the Cleveland community through residencies at University Hospitals, Cleveland Clinic and MetroHealth Medical Center.
  • 21% will remain in Ohio. 
  • 38% of the class matched to residencies at top-ranked hospitals, according to 2018-2019 Best Hospitals Honor Roll rankings, such as: Johns Hopkins Hospital, Massachusetts General, UCSF Medical Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, UCLA Medical Center and Mount Sinai Hospital.

Maltz Performing Arts Center, lit up at night

Maltz Center's Silver Hall Concert Series Continues

The Milton and Tamar Maltz Performing Arts Center at the Temple Tifereth-Israel plays host to The Silver Hall Concert Series, a showcase series featuring professional and semi-professional ensembles from Cleveland and the surrounding neighborhoods. Cleveland's deep and rich musical talent is the focus of free concerts structured around CWRU's Music Department ensemble performances.
Find more information online >

Live streaming of CWRU Music Concerts at the Maltz Performing Arts Center is now available! Check it out:

Do your part for the arts! Volunteer for events at the Maltz >