See responses to the Emory Magazine president's column, winter 2013.

Thanks for the great review of Replay (“Second Chances,” winter 2013), which I read years ago and think about often when musing the “what have I done with my life issues” we all have. I wondered about the author’s connection to Emory and am glad to have that question answered. Keep up the wonderful Emory history items!

Charles Harden 70C, Helena, Georgia 

I’m glad that I read Eddy Von Mueller’s article “Second Chances” in Emory Magazine. It has inspired me to read this book [Replay], and I look forward to picking it up next week.

Lisa Lombardi 16P, Brookline, New Hampshire

In your review of no-grad Emoroids (“We Knew Them When,” winter 2013), you neglected my good friend and Means Hall next-door neighbor Peter Buck 79C, who moved to Athens and was a founding member of the rock band R.E.M. Probably the most famous to baby boomers and Gen-Xers. (And I did not graduate from Emory due to early acceptance in professional school in my senior year.)

Larry Baitch 79C, Dallas, Texas

Reading your article (“Anti-Discrimination,” winter 2013) about discrimination against former Emory dental school students brought up painful memories for me. Discrimination has many dimensions. I have three degrees from Emory. At the time I was working on my graduate degrees in the mid-sixties and early seventies, I was also raising four children and working part time to pay my tuition. I pursued my degrees with the help of a carrel at the new Emory library, truly a haven after making dinner and putting my four children to bed. Revising yet another draft of my dissertation, I joined Governor Jimmy Carter’s campaign staff when he decided to run for president. I subsequently served as a detailee at the White House during President Carter’s first year in office. Over a period of five agonizing years, my dissertation committee kept sending back my thesis, claiming the work was not sufficiently scholarly to grant my degree, with overt implications that I was too old and too burdened with family to have any hope of an academic career. Less overt but nonetheless felt were subtle references to my “culture” as a practicing Jew. In my despair, I turned to Morris Abram, who was a friend when he had practiced law in Atlanta, later becoming president of Brandeis University and US ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva. I sent him my thesis draft, and he sent it out to scholars at prestigious universities who reported inappropriate comments coming back from my committee. Morris then spoke discreetly with everyone’s beloved vice president and dean of faculties, Jake Ward. I met one last time with my committee in the oral defense of my thesis, and my degree was granted. And so mine is not a victim story, but one of passion and commitment to making a difference in the world, if not through teaching, then through finding another way.

Merle Lefkoff 59C 65G 75PhD, President, Center for Emergent Diplomacy, Santa Fe, New Mexico

The short article “Anti-Discrimination” revived memories from long ago . . . good and bad memories. Dr. Brickman was an advisor to my fraternity, AEPi, while I attended Emory from 1960 to 1964. I remember a very decent and upright man trying to corral a herd of cats. But, I also remembered an aspect of Jewish discrimination at Emory College that I experienced during my freshman year. Rumor had it that there was an English professor who always gave poor grades to Jewish students. Despite advice to the contrary, I took his English 101 class anyway and received a D. Every other grade for four years was A or B. Discrimination? Did this happen to other Jewish students? I don’t know. But, it would be nice to look under that rock.

Arthur Diamond 64C, Austin, Texas

I truly enjoyed the article “The Secret Lives of Faculty.” I found it fascinating that so many here at Emory have such interesting lives away from their already interesting professions. Of course I think this is probably the norm for a majority of the Emory population. Thank you and to them for allowing us to see into their “secret lives.”

Jan Kimbrough, Emory Program Associate

Thank you so much for including the joyful essay from Lisa Newbern (“Limitless Love,” winter 2013) about parenting her child with Down syndrome. Inclusion of all individuals, with all their unique gifts, into our community is paramount to the success of any of us. As Ms. Newbern so hopefully wrote, “communities of greater acceptance are within reach.” Emory has come a long way since I was an undergraduate and the Office of Disability Services was up a flight of stairs and unreachable by many, but we continue to need these beautiful and tender reminders of how much we have to gain by policies of inclusion.

Maeve Howett 82C 85N 97MN 06PhD, Atlanta

“Hey, I know that guy!” was my first reaction when I saw the cover of the Emory Magazine winter 2013 edition. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about my doctor, Jonathan Beitler. After reading your short biography I felt enlightened regarding how he went about treating my cancer. Dr. Beitler was methodically relentless in his approach to and implementation of my radiation treatment. The mission was accomplished, and I am in remission since October 2010. Thank you for bringing Dr. Jonathan Beitler out of the basement of the Winship Cancer Institute onto the cover of your magazine, and thank you, Dr. Beitler, for helping me to “preserve the fighting strength.”

Glenn Chitlik, Atlanta
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