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graffit-e logo November 2007

25 Years of CLASSics

The International Music Festival's silver anniversary, led by our very own Abbey Simon. Read more »

Dean Antel

Dean's Message

Thanks for taking a look at the first graphic electronic newsletter from your College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. Our students and faculty are doing a lot of great things, and we’re glad we can share them with you through these monthly newsletters. Read more »


Adriana Kugler

Adriana Kugler receives John T. Dunlop Scholar Award


SoC students

SoC students pull all-nighter. But this time, it’s a good thing.


Chinese program logo

Chinese Studies only at UH


Jim Parsons

Do you know this alumnus? Millions of Americans do

New Faces

Mark Medoff

When You Comin’ Here, Mark Medoff?

You Can Help

Support your college by putting your money where our minds are.

Around CLASS and Campus

UH archive photoCLASS celebrates UH's 80th birthday and Homecoming Roarin' 07. Visit the official Homecoming page.

We Want To Hear From You!

Send us your comments or questions.

Dean's Message (continued)

Thanks for taking a look at the first graphic electronic newsletter from your College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences.  We hope you like it and that you will find it useful, informative, and entertaining.

Creation of the newsletter is under the guidance of John David Powell, the interim director of communication for CLASS, and Nhan Nguyen, Web Project Manager.  John comes to CLASS after eight years in the Office of the Chancellor/President where he served as speechwriter and handled a variety of communication functions.  You can read more from John regarding the naming of the newsletter.

I want to take this opportunity, on behalf of everyone at CLASS, to send our best wishes to our alumni, friends, and colleagues affected by last month’s California wildfires.  We don’t know how many members of our CLASS family had to leave their homes, but we do know that many of you receiving this newsletter are among the hundreds of thousands of residents forced to evacuate their communities.  We would like to hear from you, when time permits, to know that you are safe.  In the meantime, please know that your CLASS family, here in Houston and around the world, has you in our thoughts and prayers.

John J. Antel
Dean and Professor

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So, why Graffit-e?

John Powell, Interim Communication Director for CLASS

A couple of reasons.  A discussion about possible titles for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences electronic newsletter (e-newsletter) came down to the need for something catchy, something unexpected, and something that did not have the acronym CLASS.  Not that there’s anything wrong with using CLASS in the name.  But, if we could come up with a name that didn’t use CLASS, then why not?

Graffit-e came about after considerable consideration.  It’s catchy, it’s unexpected, and the little “e” at the end ties it in with the whole e-newsletter theme.

Graffiti has been around since humans started scrawling images on the walls of caves.  Some folks consider graffiti an artistic means of communication.  Others see graffiti as unsightly and unwanted vandalism.  We prefer the former, and we hope you like it, too.


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Feature: 25 Years of CLASSics

Moores Opera House

The International Music Festival at the Rebecca and John J. Moores School of Music observed its Silver Anniversary this month, showing once again why it is one of the world’s premier piano festivals. 

Our own Abbey Simon, Lillie Cranz Cullen Distinguished Professor of Music, founded the festival in 1984.  He has performed at this international event more than any other artist.  Professor Simon also is one of the most recorded classical artists of all time.

If you have not had the opportunity to hear him play, or if you would like another chance to see and hear a master perform, we can take care of you.  View this video of Abbey Simon in QuickTime format (free QuickTime player download required if you don't already have it), and enjoy!

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Dr. Adriana Kugler

Adriana Kugler receives John T. Dunlop Scholar Award

November started with great news about one of our outstanding faculty members. Adriana Kugler, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Economics, received a 2007 John T. Dunlop Scholar Award from the Labor and Employment Relations Association. The award recognizes the research contribution of an academic for the best contribution to international and/or comparative labor and employment research.

Dr. Kugler will receive her award in New Orleans in January.

You can find out more about recent recognitions of our faculty, students, and staff on our CLASS Excellence page.

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Video still from "A Cougar Dream"

School of Communication students pull all-nighter. But this time, it’s a good thing.

Thirty-four School of Communication students pulled an all-nighter last month, but not because they had to cram for a test. The students, under the leadership of instructional professors Craig Crowe, Keith Houk, and Randy Polk, entered the Insomnia Film Festival competition sponsored by Apple, Inc.

(Read the UH News Release)

This year’s teams were:

A Cougar Dream (view video)

  • Class: TV II
  • Erica Garduza, Madj Ghanayem, Alicia Hodges, Maria Rodriguez, Bryan L. Woods

Back At Ya (view video)

  • Class: Intro to Media Production
  • Munir Shivji, Amir Hirani, Heena Momin, Sharmin Maredia, Nuruddin Ali

Charming the Cobra (view video)

  • Class: Intro to Media Production
  • Carter Prine, Glayton Prine, Wesley Gill, Hannah Garcia, Luke Kirschke, and Mike Flores

Disconnected (view video)

  • Class: Producing & Directing
  • Hannah Yang, Irene Kwan, Najeeha Salim

Dissonance Theory (view video)

  • Class: Digital Cinematography
  • Jason Stember, Leslie Nelson, Jacob Hurtz, Marlon Price, Victor Santillian

Hurry Up and Wait (view video)

  • Class: Digital Cinematography
  • Sandra Zamora, Shawna Brahier, Stephanie Christieans, Orlando Briones, Sara Mueller

The Ultimate Spite Movie (view video)

  • Class: Adv. Digital Cinematography
  • Lucas Mirales, Ben Sayeg, Bryan Longobardi, Steven Zangirolami, Jacob Kurtz

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Chinese Program logo

Chinese Studies now offered as a major

Our College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences can make a claim that no other college in Texas can match:  We have the only Chinese Studies major in Texas!

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved the Chinese Studies major in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages on July 31.  This semester, 299 students enrolled, which makes it one of the largest programs in the department.

Chinese Studies provides instruction in the Chinese language at all undergraduate levels.  Students will receive an introduction to Chinese culture through English-language culture and film courses and literature.  Students also get the chance to participate in events organized by Houston’s Chinese communities and the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China.

Also, the Chinese Studies program has two new $500 undergraduate scholarships for students focusing on East Asia or South Asia in the areas of language, culture, or history.  More details of the scholarships will be announced as they are available.  Applications will start in January for the academic year starting in August 2008.

(Read more about the program from the Daily Cougar)

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Jim Parsons

Do you know this alumnus? Millions of Americans do

Do you know this alumnus?  Millions of Americans watch him every week on the CBS sitcom The Big Bang Theory.  He’s Jim Parsons, a 1996 CLASS graduate from the School of Theatre & Dance.

His fans also know him from his recurring role as Rob Holbrook on the show Judging Amy.  Jim’s been in the films Garden State, Heights, On the Road with Judas, Gardener of Eden, 10 Items or Less, and School for Scoundrels.  While at UH, Jim was a founder of the non-profit theatre company, Infernal Bridegroom Productions. 

Jim plays Sheldon, the nerdy roommate of nerdy Leonard.  By the way, the female lead character’s name is Penny.  Do we notice something here?  An homage, maybe, to Hollywood honchos Sheldon Leonard and Penny Marshall?  Or are some of us just showing our age?  Could be both.

Jim’s not the only CLASS alumnus in the news.  Find out who’s done what by visiting CLASS Alumni News.  And, be sure to send us your alumni news updates.  We want to hear from YouH’ers!

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New Faces

Mark Medoff

When You Comin’ Here, Mark Medoff?

The Tony Award-winning writer of Children of a Lesser God is coming to Houston.  Mark Medoff joins our School of Theatre & Dance in January.  Medoff’s credits also include When You Comin’ Back, Red Ryder,  and the films Clara’s Heart and City of Joy.

Read the UH news release for more information about Mark Medoff.  And keep up with the latest CLASS News on our News & Events web page.

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